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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.

Arlington County CERT Deploys to Assist in Hurricane Sandy Recovery PDF Print E-mail

As dawn approached and winds subsided the morning of Tuesday, October 30, Arlington County CERT members were getting ready to hit the streets. Armed with caution tape and dressed in rain gear and reflective vests, over 100 CERT members -- officially deployed at 1000 -- surveyed their neighborhoods for damage, marked off hazards and reported their findings to the county's Emergency Operations Center (EOC) via their neighborhood team coordinators. In less than four hours, damage had been assessed, cordoned off and reported for over 90% of the county. Along the way, CERT members were able to assist many Arlingtonians by providing answers to questions, back-up power for neighbor's sump pumps, assistance in helping the elderly and infirm, and even rescuing a tree frog!

Prior to Hurricane Sandy, the Office of Emergency Management loaned us ten county radios so each neighborhood team would have a link to the EOC in the event power was lost and/or phones inoperable. Fortunately, these radios were only needed for relatively minor communications. We returned them to the Emergency Communications Center cache after the storm. In the not-too-distant future -- and in recognition of our need to be able to communicate with authorities in a disaster -- we will take possession of twelve radios of our own. Think of them as a 10th anniversary present from the Office of Emergency Management!

Many thanks to all who helped out following Hurricane Sandy and who continue to support the important work of the Arlington County CERT. Thanks especially to John and Mary Bell who stepped in on Monday to assume the leadership role for the Hospital CERT in the absence of their team coordinator. Talk about baptism by fire!

We don't need to look too far north to see what Hurricane Sandy was capable of ... and many of you have friends and family members who are still recovering. Arlington, for the most part, fared well. But there's always a next time and the importance of your training and personal preparedness can never be underestimated. Way to go, Arlington, CERT!