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Becoming part of the preparedness solution

3 years ago by in ( City Guide , News , Welcome to Brea )
After the March 28 earthquake scared the stuffing out of me, I took the Community Emergency Response Team training. It was quite an experience and a very positive one. I now feel confident in the knowledge and skills learned to help others and myself when we again encounter an earthquake, wildfire or other calamity. The sessions took 20 hours of my time and none of my money. CERT curriculum and equipment is approved and funded through the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

    Brea, Placentia and Yorba Linda partner in offering CERT classes for their residents and businesses. At the April 28 to May 14 class 76 people were enrolled and 73 completed the course. I thought it was a big class because of the earthquake, but Anna Cave, Brea’s emergency preparedness coordinator, said that the classes have been averaging from 50 to 75 people for a while.

      While most of the attendees in the class were from Brea, there were also a good share of people from Yorba Linda, Placentia plus Santa Ana and Buena Park. And they were not all residents. Several came from local businesses, including Embassy Suites, Brea Mall’s security force, property management companies and small business owners. Even a couple of Brea city employees were in the class. It was reassuring that the local business community is taking CERT seriously. When calamity strikes most likely we won’t all be at home.

        Fire, emergency preparedness and law enforcement personnel teach the classes in a way that makes learning about disaster preparedness interesting and fun. Seems weird, but Cave and her crew definitely added an entertainment element to the serious subjects.

          Over the 20 hours, we learned how to cope with and handle emergency situations, especially when the first responders may not be able to reach us for hours or even days. While the first five sessions were by lecture and video presentations, the last day was all hands-on experience. We worked in teams and pairs performing such tasks as triage, small fire suppression and splinting with cardboard. Hey, it works.

            The attendees ranged from 20-something to three ladies in their 80s. After graduation, Eileen Schafer said, “I am 88 this month and I feel I can still make a difference.”

              Terri Daxon is a freelance writer and the owner of Daxon Marketing Communications. She gives her perspective for the Orange County Register on Brea issues twice a month. Contact her at daxoncomm@earthlink.net.
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"Thank you" for visiting Beautiful Brea Old & New (BBON). First & foremost, I am a proud mother & wife. I am also a well-rounded independent contractor. But you can call me an enthusiastic cheerleader, supporting wholeheartedly the City of Brea --a charming town with character & innovation, turning 100 years old in 2017!

  • Carolyn Campbell

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