Everyone should consider doing their local First Responder Training and/or the Red Cross Certification Training, but why?
First of all, “First Responder Training” comes in several forms. In some areas, it is called just that: First Responder Training. In other areas, it goes by other names. In my area, it is called Community Emergency Response Team, or CERT. It is organized and run by FEMA. The training covers disaster response skills – light search and rescue (including cribbing), fire safety, disaster medical operations, and functioning as an organized rescue team.
Some of the benefits of having First Responder or Red Cross Certification are:
- You’ll be trained in first aid procedures. The training through CERT and through Red Cross are somewhat different from each other (in terms of focus and priorities), so it would be a good idea to go through both.
- You’ll learn how your city is planning to handle a local emergency. Each city has its own emergency plan. During the First Responder or Red Cross training they usually tell you what protocol is in your city, since they are the ones you’ll be working with in an emergency.
- You can serve as a volunteer in emergencies to help your neighbors and your city, and you might even save a life.
- You’ll know how to assess any emergency and prioritize the wounded. Triage (sorting people by the seriousness of their injuries) is a critical part of any emergency. Finding those who are most injured and treating them first is the best way to preserve the most lives. The others, who are less severely injured, will be alright waiting for treatment a little longer.
- You can purchase a First Responder or Red Cross shirt/hat to wear, which could help you get through roadblocks to get back home or to get to your family.
- You could learn how to use a ham radio, which is great knowledge for in an emergency. You should also find out what frequencies the local people are using to find or update loved ones. If they don’t train you on ham radio in your First Responder class, chances are they can tell you where to take a ham radio operator’s license class – there is probably one close to you, and it is not too expensive to get a license. Some ham radios in the $50-140 range are even said to be EMP proof.
- You’ll get a discount on needed supplies through a group order or at Vendor Night. (Hopefully, your training offers one. Ours did, and we picked up some great products at a terrific price.)
We got certified with both Red Cross and First Responder, as they come from different perspectives and I can assist either group in a local emergency.
Contact these services in your community today and find out about training options!