On a sunny Saturday morning from 9 to noon in Marlin Park, CERT members gathered to run an activation drill, to practice set up of NBH 3 ICP (Neighborhood 3 Incident Command Post).
The CERT members toured Marlin Park to become familiar with the geography and determine the assets and challenges that would exist in an emergency situation, and decide where different CERT functions could be based at the site (communications, medical treatment, supply station, morgue, etc.)
After an examination of the Area 1 CERT trailer, CERT members unloaded the NBH 3 supplies and enjoyed the exercise of setting up ICP, communications, and medical areas. They assessed what additional supplies would be essential and helpful, and what areas could be problematic in a real emergency. The CERT members had the opportunity to use supplies from the trailer to create a visual/privacy barrier for the planned medical area, to inventory items coming off and returning to the trailer, and the responsibilities of the ICP commander.
They learned a lot about what it takes to set up an ICP and, although we are fortunate to have an abundance of supplies in our CERT trailers, they learned the challenges and limitations of the supplies as well. They gained confidence in setting up an ICP, and are looking forward to the next NBH 3 meeting which involves practicing these skills at night time.
This article was contributed to by Ruth Sieber and John Chamberlain