Heights schedules disaster preparedness classes

Photo courtesy of Robert Ankrapp. Members of the Dearborn Heights CERT group learn the basics of safe vehicle extrication techniques during a training session at the Dearborn Heights Fire Department. The group will hold its next class for interested volunteers beginning April 18. Interested individuals should complete and submit their applications to the Dearborn Heights Office of Emergency Management by April 10.

Photo courtesy of Robert Ankrapp. Members of the Dearborn Heights CERT group learn the basics of safe vehicle extrication techniques during a training session at the Dearborn Heights Fire Department. The group will hold its next class for interested volunteers beginning April 18. Interested individuals should complete and submit their applications to the Dearborn Heights Office of Emergency Management by April 10.

HEIGHTS — Residents have an opportunity to get involved with the city’s Community Emergency Response Team program through a new series of evening classes beginning April 18.

The classes will meet from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on three consecutive Saturdays at the Dearborn Heights Justice Center, 25637 Michigan Ave.

The CERT program trains and utilizes volunteer help in responding to local emergencies. The program recruits and educates volunteers about disaster preparedness (based on hazards that could impact the area), and trains them in basic disaster response skills including fire safety and suppression, light search and rescue, and disaster-related medical operations.

Using local classroom training and “live” exercises, CERT members are prepared to deploy quickly within their neighborhoods, providing basic disaster response services until the city’s professional emergency staff can arrive.

This is particularly valuable in cases of large-scale incidents, where the demand on professional responders may overwhelm the system, or widespread damage prevents their ability to reach affected areas quickly.

Once professional responders arrive on site, CERT members assist as directed by the professional responders. The city’s CERT members have also taken an active role in numerous community service activities such as festivals and public awareness campaigns.

Prospective participants must complete and submit an application, which they can receive by contacting Emergency Manager Bob Ankrapp at 313-277-7405, or e-mailing him at ankrrob@yahoo.com.

Additional information (including a downloadable application) also can be found on the city website’s “Community Emergency Response Team” page, which is under the “Public Safety” tab of the City of Dearborn Heights website, www.ci.dearborn-heights.mi.us.

Interested individuals should complete and submit their applications by April 10.