STATE–The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management, supplied Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) volunteers with specialized utility trailers on Wednesday, to enhance their emergency response capabilities during times of crisis as well as assist first responders in the field.
“New Jersey is proud to be one of the nation’s largest CERT programs with 15,000 volunteers. As we continue to build this essential homeland security program, we will enhance our volunteer’s efforts by equipping them with tools such as emergency response utility trailers to compliment their training and undying dedication to their fellow resident’s safety,” said Lieutenant Colonel Jerome Hatfield; Deputy Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police Homeland Security Branch and Chairman of the New Jersey Citizen’s Corps Council.
The Utility Trailers awarded to CERT teams are strategically located across New Jersey. Each trailer is loaded with the equipment necessary to set up a mobile command post and triage center, emergency lights, stretchers, rescue devices and medical supplies. Today’s deployment brings the total number of CERT Utility Trailer in New Jersey to 82.
The following CERT teams received Utility Trailers:
- Mahwah / Bergen County
- Lyndhurst / Bergen County
- Somerville / Raritan / Somerset County
- Triboro Cert /Burlington County
- Phillipsburg / Warren County
- Stockton College / Atlantic County
- Frenchtown / Hunterdon County
- Clark / Union County
- Monmounth County
Wednesday’s deployment of utility trailers is funded entirely by the United States Department of Homeland Security and FEMA. Each trailer is valued at $3,400. The equipment in each trailer is valued at about $3,000.
“The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management will continue to support this valuable program and empower CERT volunteers as they selflessly continue their commitment to the state and its residents during an emergency,” added Hatfield.
New Jersey Citizen Corps is a volunteer organization directed by NJOEM. It includes the Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT), Medical Reserve Corps (MRC), Neighborhood Watch, Volunteers in Police Service and Fire Corps. New Jersey Citizen Corps and New Jersey CERT are the largest programs of their kind in the nation.
Citizen Corps volunteers are ordinary citizens who supplement and support their area’s first responders. The volunteers undergo basic emergency management training including fire suppression, first aid and triage, search and rescue and disaster psychology.
During crises including the June 2006 flooding, New Jersey CERT volunteers have taken a leadership role in helping their neighbors; staffing emergency operations centers and evacuee shelters; directing the activities of other volunteers; and searching for missing children.
Citizen Corps volunteers must be at least 18 years old and have a valid driver license. Anyone can participate, regardless of their level of physical ability. Those interested should call (609) 538-6064 and speak with Howard Butt, the New Jersey Citizen Corps Coordinator. CERT information can be found at www.Ready.NJ.gov.
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