ENCINITAS — Wearing their signature green vests, about 20 members of the Encinitas Community Emergency Response Team stood in front of a small crowd at a City Council meeting, where they were recognized by the council for their service to the community.
Mayor Catherine Blakespear presented the members of CERT, a program that trains residents how to respond to natural disasters and other emergencies as part of a team of volunteers, with certificates honoring their “continued excellent public service.”
“Not everyone in Encinitas understands what CERT does,” said Encinitas Fire Department Battalion Chief Michael Spaulding said. “They are trained to respond to emergencies and natural disasters. They are an integral part of a disaster response, and they do it just for the passion and love of the city.
“Their training is voluntary, but definitely counted on in the event of an emergency,” Spaulding said.
According to the organization’s website, Encinitas CERT’s mission is to reduce the severity a large-scale disaster will have on the city of Encinitas.
The group focuses on three things: Providing members with ongoing training in basic disaster response, leadership and organization skills; educating residents in disaster preparedness and recruiting new team members to join the organization; and supporting the Fire Department and related emergency services in the event of a disaster.
For more information about CERT, visit www.enccert.org.
The Academy is open to Del Mar, Elfin Forest, Encinitas, Rancho Santa Fe and Solana Beach residents.