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Suggested Citation:"Appendix B - CERT Overview." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2013. Integrating Community Emergency Response Teams (A-CERTs) at Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22468.
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Page 33
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B - CERT Overview." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2013. Integrating Community Emergency Response Teams (A-CERTs) at Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22468.
×
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Page 34
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B - CERT Overview." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2013. Integrating Community Emergency Response Teams (A-CERTs) at Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22468.
×
Page 34
Page 35
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B - CERT Overview." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2013. Integrating Community Emergency Response Teams (A-CERTs) at Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22468.
×
Page 35
Page 36
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B - CERT Overview." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2013. Integrating Community Emergency Response Teams (A-CERTs) at Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22468.
×
Page 36
Page 37
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B - CERT Overview." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2013. Integrating Community Emergency Response Teams (A-CERTs) at Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22468.
×
Page 37
Page 38
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B - CERT Overview." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2013. Integrating Community Emergency Response Teams (A-CERTs) at Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22468.
×
Page 38
Page 39
Suggested Citation:"Appendix B - CERT Overview." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2013. Integrating Community Emergency Response Teams (A-CERTs) at Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22468.
×
Page 39

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32 a p p e n d i x B CERT Overview

CeRT Overview 33 The CERT concept was developed and implemented by the Los Angeles City Fire Department (LAFD) in 1985. The Whittier Narrows earthquake in 1987 underscored the area-wide threat of a major disaster in California. Furthermore, it confirmed the need for training civilians to meet their immediate needs. As a result, the LAFD created the Disaster Preparedness Division with the purpose of training citizens and private and government employees. The training program that LAFD initiated makes good sense and furthers the process of citizens understanding their responsibility in preparing for disaster. It also increases their ability to safely help themselves, their family and their neighbors. The FEMA recognizes the importance of preparing citizens. The Emergency Management Institute (EMI) and the National Fire Academy adopted and expanded the CERT materials believing them applicable to all hazards. The CERT or Airport CERT (A-CERT) course will benefit any citizen who takes it. This individual will be better prepared to respond to and cope with the aftermath of a disaster. In addition, if a community wants to supplement its response capability after a disaster, civilians can be recruited and trained as neighborhood, business, and government teams that, in essence, will be auxiliary responders. These groups can provide immediate assistance to victims in their area, organize spontaneous volunteers who have not had the training, and collect disaster intelligence that will assist professional responders with prioritization and allocation of resources following a disaster. Since 1993 when this training was made available nationally by FEMA, communities in 28 States and Puerto Rico have conducted CERT training. The majority of CERTs are formed by members of an organization, neighborhood watch, or workplace who want to be better prepared for the hazards that threaten their communities or companies. The initial CERT programs were developed to assist communities in taking care of themselves in the aftermath of a major disaster when first responders are overwhelmed or unable to respond because of communication or transportation difficulties. As the CERT concept has taken hold across the country, however, CERTs have become much more than originally envisioned. CERTs have proven themselves to be an active and vital part of their communities’ preparedness and response capability, which makes them ideal for inclusion into an airport emergency situation. For example, CERTs have been used to:  Distribute and/or install smoke alarms and batteries to the elderly and disabled. Background Beyond Disaster Response7 7 CERT Background Information. http://www.citizencorps.gov/cert/start-0-1.shtm.

34 integrating CeRTs at airports: What is CeRT and How do i Use it?  Assist with evacuations and traffic control.  Promote community awareness of potential hazards and preparedness measures.  Supplement staffing at special events, such as parades.  Act as victims in training exercises. CERTs are an investment of local government’s time and resources. To capitalize on this investment, program sponsors can view CERT members as a volunteer resource that can assist with public safety activities. Such an approach will actively involve members in serving their communities beyond disaster response and add value to the CERT program. This investment of time and training by an airport could benefit the organization in a myriad of ways. Examples include traffic control on the landside of the airport, providing directions in the terminal in the event of an evacuation, searching buildings following an evacuation, as well as assistance with parking and patrons during an air show or holiday rush periods. The following steps are recommended to start a CERT:  Identify the program goals that CERT will meet and the resources available to conduct the program in your area.  Gain approval from airport management and oversight boards to use CERT as a means to prepare citizens to assist the airport in response and recovery actions when services may not be adequate. This is an excellent opportunity to be proactive in working with its community.  Identify and recruit potential participants for CERT such as airport stakeholders, community groups, business and industry workers, and local government workers.  Train CERT core instructor group.  Conduct CERT training sessions.  Conduct refresher training and exercises with CERTs. The basic CERT course is generally delivered in the community by a team of first responders who have the requisite knowledge and skills to instruct the sessions. It is suggested that the instructors complete a CERT Train-the-Trainer (TTT) conducted by their State Training Office for Emergency Management or the EMI in order to learn appropriate training techniques. CERT training for volunteers who normally work during the week is usually delivered in 2-and-a-half-hour sessions, one evening a week over a 7-week period or Friday evening and all day Saturday and Sunday. Airports using internal staff may elect to use an alternate training schedule. The training consists of the following for a total of 20–24 hours of contact time. Topics included are: Gett ing Started Del ivery

CeRT Overview 35 Session I, DISASTER PREPAREDNESS: Addresses hazards to which people are vulnerable in their community. Materials cover actions that participants and their families take before, during, and after a disaster. As the session progresses, the instructor begins to explore an expanded response role for civilians in that they should begin to consider themselves disaster workers. Since they will want to help their family members and neighbors, this training can help them operate in a safe and appropriate manner. The CERT concept and organization are discussed as well as applicable laws governing volunteers in that jurisdiction. Session II, DISASTER FIRE SUPPRESSION: Briefly covers fire chemistry, hazardous materials, fire hazards, and fire suppression strategies. However, the thrust of this session is the safe use of fire extinguishers, sizing up the situation, controlling utilities, and extinguishing a small fire. Session III, DISASTER MEDICAL OPERATIONS PART I: Participants practice diagnosing and treating airway obstruction, bleeding, and shock by using simple triage and rapid treatment techniques. Session IV, DISASTER MEDICAL OPERATIONS, PART II: Covers evaluating patients by doing a head to toe assessment, establishing a medical treatment area, performing basic first aid, and practicing in a safe and sanitary manner. Session V, LIGHT SEARCH AND RESCUE OPERATIONS: Participants learn about search and rescue planning, size-up, search techniques, rescue techniques, and most important, rescuer safety. Session VI, DISASTER PSYCHOLOGY AND TEAM ORGANIZATION: Covers signs and symptoms that might be experienced by the disaster victim and worker. It addresses CERT organization and management principles and the need for documentation. Session VII, COURSE REVIEW AND DISASTER SIMULATION: Participants review their answers from a take home examination. Finally, they practice the skills that they have learned during the previous six sessions in disaster activity. During each session participants are required to bring safety equipment (gloves, goggles, mask) and disaster supplies (bandages, flashlight, dressings) which will be used during the session. By doing this for each session, participants are building a personal disaster response kit of items that they will need during a disaster. However, the airport may want to invest in kits that are stored at the airport for responders. FEMA supports CERT by conducting or sponsoring TTT’s for members of the fire, medical, and emergency management community. The objectives of the TTT are to prepare attendees to promote this training in their community; conduct TTT’s at their Resources

36 integrating CeRTs at airports: What is CeRT and How do i Use it? location; conduct training sessions for neighborhood, business and industry, and government groups; and organize teams with which first responders can interface following a major disaster. The best source of help in an emergency or disaster is the paid professional responder. But, if they are not sufficient in number to address immediate needs or to protect property, CERT members can help. CERTs are not intended to replace a community’s response capability, but rather, to serve as an important supplementary role. The agency or airport that sponsors the CERT program is creating a volunteer resource that is a vital part of the community’s operational capability following a disaster. That agency should develop training standards for CERT personnel and general protocols for their individual activation and use. CERT members must keep their own personal safety in mind as a first priority. CERT volunteers must know their personal capabilities and the limitations and work within those limitations. CERTs do NOT:  Suppress large fires.  Enter structures that they consider heavily damaged and dangerous (e.g., leaning or moved from foundation).  Perform hazardous materials clean-up or respond to incidents involving radiological, chemical, or biological agents.  Perform medical, fire, or search and rescue operations beyond their level of training.  Activate or deploy unless called for in their procedures. CERTs are considered “Good Samaritans” and covered under the Volunteer Protection Act. CERT volunteers do not have any authority beyond serving as “Good Samaritans” when helping others. When deployed appropriately, however, CERTs can complement and enhance first- response capability in neighborhoods and workplaces by ensuring the safety of themselves and their families working outward to the neighborhood or office and beyond until first responders arrive. CERTs can then assist first-response personnel as directed. This section discusses the roles that A-CERTs can play to augment emergency management and response capability within their community. Following a major disaster, 8 CERT Roles. http://www.citizencorps.gov/cert/start-0-2.shtm. CERT CERT Standa Roles8 rds and Protocols

CeRT Overview 37 first responders who provide fire and medical services will not be able to meet the demand for these services. Using the basic CERT curriculum, CERT personnel train to prepare for a disaster or overwhelming event by:  Identifying and mitigating potential hazards in the terminal or unsecure side of an airport.  Assisting in the facilitation of passengers and other terminal employees in the safe transition away from the affected areas. Learning basic skills to assist injured passengers and employees of the airport until professional resources arrive.  Working cooperatively as a team within the airport and local EMS/Public Safety for an orderly response or evacuation from the affected area.  Maintaining a relationship with the agency that sponsors the CERT program.  Participating in continuing education and training.  Volunteering for projects to enhance the public safety of their communities. During airport training, CERTs learn to:  Prepare for the specific known hazards that threaten the airport.  Apply size-up and safety principles.  Assist the trades personnel in terminating utilities.  Extinguish small fires.  Set up a medical treatment area.  Conduct searches and rescues in lightly and moderately damaged structures.  Understand the psychological impact of a disaster on themselves and others.  Organize CERT members and spontaneous volunteers for an effective and safe response.  Assist in pedestrian and vehicle traffic control.  Apply response skills in a disaster simulation. Following initial training, the sponsoring agency has the challenge of helping CERT members maintain and improve their skills through a variety of training programs, exercises, and special projects, all tailored at the local level to meet local needs. CERT Training: Preparing for Emergency Response

38 integrating CeRTs at airports: What is CeRT and How do i Use it? When a disaster or overwhelming event occurs and responders are not immediately available, CERTs can assist by: Conducting an initial size-up in their homes or workplaces. Reducing immediate dangers, evacuating the area, and helping others. Working with people in the immediate area. Working with CERT members and volunteers to establish a Command Post, staging area, and medical triage and treatment areas. Collecting damage information and developing a plan of operation based on lifesaving priorities and available resources. Applying their training to situations where CERT members can make a difference. Establishing and maintaining communication with responders. Depending on your plan for CERTs, the teams may fill other roles as well. For more information about CERTs and how they are used throughout the country, see the following articles from the electronic newsletter, “The Connection”: Portland NETs Bigger Than Disaster Response. All around the United States, fire departments, emergency management professionals and some law enforcement agencies are getting on board with CERTs training. In Portland, Oregon, CERT members (called Neighborhood Emergency Teams (NETs)) staff first aid booths at neighborhood fairs and parades; speak at PTA meetings, neighborhood association meetings, and service clubs; and assist Fire Bureau staff at community safety fairs (http://www.naem.com/connection/articles/portland.html). Mitigation Actions by the CERT Team. These two mitigation actions were organized and completed by the CERT members of Edgewater. The fire department supplied the blue hydrant markers and glue, and CERT did the rest. They asked the homeowners permission to mark their home address on the street curb and for a voluntary donation, and received 100% cooperation. Both these mitigation actions were well received by the residents of Edgewater (http://www.naem.com/connection/5/edgewater5.html). CERT Proves to Be Valuable During the Florida Wildfires. CERT members in the Edgewater area staffed fire stations to answer incoming phone calls, disseminate public information, handle donations, and prepare meals for line personnel (http://www.naem.com/connection/articles1/edgewater.html). CERT Roles During Emergencies Other CERT Roles

CeRT Overview 39 Partnership for Preparedness Semper Paratus. In a day of shrinking budgets and small staffs, it is difficult for any public safety agency to maintain a high level of preparedness. Detection of wildfires in rural areas still relies on a person scaling a 100-foot tower in the heat of the day to watch for smoke. Alachua County CERTs are used to supplement fire tower staff during fire season (http://www.naem.com/connection/4/partnership4.html). CERTs have the potential to contribute to an airport’s ability to respond to airport-related disasters providing invaluable manpower following a disaster when first responders are not yet on scene or are overwhelmed. Providing airport-specific CERT training would dramatically increase the resources available to airport management, which may operate with reduced resources and a limited number of staff. As a supplement to an existing and successful program, this Airport CERT training annex incorporates the many aspects of well-established community and airport programs and resources. Summary

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TRB’s Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) Report 95: Integrating Community Emergency Response Teams at Airports (A-CERTs) provides guidance and tools designed to help organize and operate a citizen volunteer program to assist airport staff in emergency events or disasters.

The report, produced as a three part set, consists of the following:

• Part 1, What is a CERT and How Do I Use It?, explains what an community emergency response team (CERT) program is and how it can be used in the airport environment.

• Part 2, Basic Training Instructor Guide, includes a detailed curriculum designed to train volunteers to potentially assist at an airport during emergency events or disasters.

• Part 3, Basic Training Student Guide, is based on the instructors guide and is a resource for students as well as a takeaway from the training.

Also produced as part of ACRP Report 95 are customizable PowerPoint slides—for use by the instructor during training—and a video that can be used to educate the community and solicit volunteers.

View the ACRP Impacts on Practice for this report.

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