Community Emergency Response Team (C.E.R.T) Training Program


Following a major disaster, emergency first responders who provide public safety, fire and medical services will not be able to fully meet the demand for services. Factors, such as communications failures, road blockages, and the numbers of victims, may prevent people from receiving the emergency services they have come to expect at a moment’s notice when calling 911. The community will need to rely on each other to meet the immediate lifesaving and life-sustaining needs, particularly in neighborhoods that may be as a result of impassable roadways. The program embraces the concept of “neighbors helping neighbors”.

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program was developed in 1985 by the Los Angeles City Fire Department to provide basic training in safety and lifesaving skills to the general public. It has since been adopted and enhanced by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Fire Academy. The course is now recognized nationwide and over 50,000 citizens have been trained to date.

CERT classes focus on the following modules:

  • Disaster Preparedness

  • Fire Safety

  • Disaster Medical #1

  • Disaster Medical #2

  • Search and Rescue

  • CERT Organization & Disaster Psychology

  • Terrorism

  • Course Review and Disaster Simulation Drill

Q: What is CERT?

A: The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Program educates people about disaster preparedness for 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 medical operations. Using the training learned in the classroom and during exercises, CERT members can assist others in their neighborhood or workplace following an event when professional responders are not immediately available to help. CERT members also are encouraged to support emergency response agencies by taking a more active role in emergency preparedness projects in their community.

Q: How does CERT benefit the community?

A: People who go through CERT training have a better understanding of the potential threats to their home, workplace and community and can take the right steps to lessen the effects of these hazards on themselves, their homes or workplace. If a disaster happens that overwhelms local response capability, CERT members can apply the training learned in the classroom and during exercises to give critical support to their family, loved ones, neighbors or associates in their immediate area until help arrives. When help does arrive, CERTs provide useful information to responders and support their efforts, as directed, at the disaster site. CERT members can also assist with non-emergency projects that improve the safety of the community.

Q: How can I sign-up for the CERT program?

A: The CERT program in Rosemead is scheduled to be a total of 20 hours (three consecutive Saturdays) of initial training.

CERT is provided free of charge within the city of Los Angeles to anyone 18 or over.

In order to have a CERT program, a minimum of 25 people needs to make a commitment to the three days of training. For additional information on CERT please call Mandy Wong, Public Safety Supervisor, at (626) 569-2292 or by email: [email protected].