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Newsflash

The Spring 2016 classes are filled. Two new classes -- open to Arlington residents and those who work in the county -- will begin in September. Click the "Contact" link for details.

About Us

With the events of September 11, 2001 still fresh in our minds - and the Pentagon in our backyard -- Arlington County (VA) launched its Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) in September 2002. Since that time, over 700 residents have completed the eight-session basic training and are prepared to assist in the event of a major disaster. About 300 of those individuals have completed additional requirements to be considered active-duty, deployable members of the CERT. Additionally, many businesspeople who work in the county but reside elsewhere have completed CERT training in Arlington so they may augment the team and/or assist their employers during work hours.

The all-volunteer Arlington County CERT has a major disaster orientation and has been� activated to assist with recovery following a number of natural disasters, including Hurricane� Isabel in 2003, Hurricane Irene in 2011 and the derecho and Hurricane Sandy in 2012. We've also assisted with shelter operations following a structure fire that displaced over 100 individuals.

Although initial training is provided by members of the Arlington County Fire Department (ACFD) and Office of Emergency Management (OEM), the CERT program within Arlington is primarily neighborhood-based. There are currently nine well-established neighborhood teams ... each comprised of a geographically adjacent cluster of the county's more than 65 civic associations. Teams meet regularly and cover topics� important to members and their own neighborhoods. While one team may be covering the operation of two-way radios, another may be practicing splinting and bandaging, while still another identifies neighborhood sources for after-hours supplies and equipment.

As a means of further increasing the value of the CERT to the county and its first responders, continuing and advanced education opportunities - including classes in incident command structure, CPR/AED certification, Tactical Emergency Casualty Care (TECC)and rail safety -- are provided. We also frequently participate in local first responder training initiatives as role players so we may witness� first-hand the type of assistance we may be called upon to provide in a disaster. And many serve as "victims" for the� mock disaster/final exam we stage for each new class in order to update their own response skills.

Arlington County CERT members receive regular updates via e-mail regarding CERT news, new members, supply purchasing opportunities, upcoming training, and other items of interest to CERT members.