Bilingual Emergency Response Training Class Offered in Mecca
MECCA – Eastern Coachella Valley residents interested in training and equipping themselves to help their neighbors in the event of disaster should register for a free bilingual class in Mecca, to be held this weekend.
Conducted by the Riverside County Fire Department, Office of Emergency Services, the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training will be held at the Mecca Family and Farmworkers Service Center in Mecca, 91-275 66th Avenue.
Supervisor John J. Benoit will give welcoming remarks to open the first training session at 5:30 p.m. Friday. The sessions will be held from 5:30-9:30 p.m. Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.
“CERT-trained volunteers take an active role in preparing for disasters and providing life-saving assistance when they occur,” said Supervisor John J. Benoit. “This is great preparation for all our communities, and I’m especially pleased that this class is offered in Spanish to train the Spanish-speaking emergency volunteers in the eastern Coachella Valley.”
Since 2009, the Office of Emergency Services has conducted a yearly Spanish CERT training class in Mecca.
Volunteers will undergo 20 hours of hands-on instruction in fire suppression, search and rescue and medical. They will also learn cribbing, a technique to systematically and safely use wood pieces to stack under heavy debris to extricate victims.
“Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT) are an integral component of disaster preparedness, response and recovery,” said Riverside County Fire Chief John R. Hawkins. “In the event of a major earthquake or other emergency event that may restrict first responder access to desert residents or a catastrophe that overwhelms all resources, CERT teams will become a critical function in assessing injuries and property damage in their communities. In many cases, CERT responders may well provide critical lifesaving and property conservation measures. Residents may not have access to things they take for granted, such as power, water and food for an extended period of time. I urge residents to take advantage of these training opportunities in your communities.”
The class is limited to the first 40 people who register. To register, visit www.rivcocert.org or call 951-955-4700.