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Flemington, NJ 08822

Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)

What is CERT? 

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Program educates families and individuals about preparing for disasters or hazards  that  may  impact  their  area  and  trains  them  in  basic disaster  response  skills  such  as  fire  safety,  light  search  and  rescue,  team  organization,  and disaster  preparedness.  

CERT  members  promote  emergency  preparedness,  give  critical  support  to  first  responders  in emergencies,  provide  immediate  assistance  to  victims,  collect  disaster  information  to  support first responder efforts and provide help in the period immediately following a major emergency or disaster. CERT enables individuals to help their families and neighbors prepare, respond and recover within their own neighborhood.

A Brief History of CERT 

Throughout history when disaster struck, people stepped in to help their neighbors and strangers alike. Millions of Americans volunteered during World War II to become civil defense workers trained  to  be  ready  should  the  war  impact  their  community. After  WWII  civil  defense  skills were  transferred  toward threats  created  by  disasters –most  often  natural  disasters  such  as hurricanes and floods. Over time, those skills began to erode and the nation’s inherent capability for self-reliance in emergencies was diminished by the lack of training and example. 

The  current  Community  Emergency  Response  Team  (CERT)  concept  was  developed  and implemented  by  the  City  of  Los  Angeles  Fire  Department  (LAFD)  in  1985  as  a  result  of knowledge  gained  from  the  catastrophic  Mexico  City  earthquake. After  a  series  of  additional disasters  including  earthquakes,  fires,  and  landslides,  LAPD  refined  their  concept  even  further. Since September 11, 2001, even greater importance has been placed on a prepared citizenry. 

Every  community  is  different  and  CERT  programs  vary  from  one  community  to  another  based on  the  needs  and  resources  available.  Basic CERT  programs  deploy  within or  close  to their neighborhoods  or  businesses.  Some  localities  may  deploy  CERTs  beyond  their  neighborhood provided  there  has  been  additional  locality  specific  training  and  in  compliance  with  incident command structures.

How do I get involved?  

Raritan Township CERT has adopted an open entry policy.  Applications are accepted from individuals throughout the area.

In addition to the knowledge gained from CERT training, by studying together volunteer trainees will  develop  the  important  skills  necessary  to  work  as  a  cohesive  team. The  skills  and knowledge  gained  in  CERT  training  will  serve  you  well  in  an  emergency  situation and your example may serve to encourage your neighbors or co-workers to become members of a CERT. 

To be a CERT volunteer you must have completed the following: 

  • Be a minimum of 18 years of age.
  • Successfully complete the Hunterdon County CERT training program. 
  • Comply with the rules and policies set forth by Raritan Twp. OEM. 
  • Complete and sign the Appointments Contract with Raritan Township.

Active CERT Volunteer Responsibilities  

  • Maintain yourself and your own household in a state of readiness so that you can effectively respond to events in your neighborhood and serve as an example to others.
  • Attend no less than 75% of the monthly CERT meetings.
  • Volunteer for a minimum of 2 events or incidents/year.
  • Maintain personal and organizational equipment in good condition.
  • Participate in at least one drill every two years.

 

Join Now

Raritan Township CERT Team Member Application:  pdf CERT Application (186 KB)

E-mail completed applications to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.