Marine Combat Center CERT trains members of the community

The Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center said on Thursday that the Mission Assurance Division G-7 will train a class of volunteers in disaster readiness on Feb. 25.

The Community Emergency Response Team, first used in Los Angeles in 1987, will facilitate the training course. At the end of the course, students will be certified in community emergency response.

"There will always be a need for first responders," Mission Assurance Division Installation Emergency Manager Niki McBain said. "What we're doing is training people aboard the Combat Center in the different steps of emergency first response, so if the day comes that an emergency occurs; responders have the back-up they need."

The course will take place over five weeks and feature classes on first aid and triage, fire suppression and extracting people from fallen buildings.

"One of the great things about the CERT program is that the whole family can participate," McBain said. "Not every participant has to be an adult. This is information that people of all ages should know and we encourage people to bring their whole family if they can."

McBain said every person should be prepared for disasters, such as earthquakes, kitchen fires or downed power lines.

"It's important to be proactive, not reactive, to emergencies or disasters," McBain said.