CERT team graduates training in Michigan

A coalition of 16 individuals in Allen Park and Melvindale in Michigan recently graduated from a local Community Emergency Response Team training program.

The team formed several months ago and began their training in January. Police Lt. Christopher Egan, the coordinator for the Allen Park CERT program, and Cpl. Rolando Hinojosa, the coordinator of Melvindale's CERT operations, trained the coalition to join the already existing group in Melvindale, the News-Herald reports.

Among the members of the team was Tina Gaworecki, an Allen Park councilwoman. While the rest of the group received their certificates last week, Gaworecki will receive her certificate at the March 25 City Council meeting to generate more interest for the program.

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the CERT program educates individuals about disaster preparedness for hazards that could impact their area and trains them in basic response skills. Disaster response skills include light search and rescue, fire safety, disaster medical operations and team organization.

CERT members apply their training by assisting others in their neighborhood following an emergency event when professional responders are not immediately available to help. CERT members also help emergency response agencies by actively engaging in emergency preparedness projects in their community, the News-Herald reports.