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Seton Hall University

Community Emergency Response Team

What is CERT?

Traditional volunteer and professional first responders may not be able to respond in a timely fashion to assist the University during disaster situations. These emergency services could be overwhelmed by the magnitude of an event, their capabilities might be degraded by the effects of the hazard, or they may not be able to reach affected areas due to debris or damaged infrastructure.

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Program was developed to provide basic training in disaster survival and rescue skills. Such training permits individuals to react more effectively and assist themselves, their co-workers, and other members of the community until the traditional emergency services arrive. Trained community members, organized into CERT teams, also support and assist the responding emergency services personnel and participate in community emergency preparedness activities.

Seton Hall University has established a campus CERT program to develop trained volunteers to assist the University community during emergencies and to participate in preparedness activities.

CERT Training Course

The CERT Basic Training Course provides participants with 20 hours of instruction in the following topics: Disaster Preparedness, Fire Safety, Disaster Medical Operations, Light Search and Rescue Operations, CERT Organization, Disaster Psychology, and Terrorism. Additional training opportunities and activities are open to all CERT members once they have completed the Basic Training Course.

Seton Hall employees, with the permission of their supervisors, are permitted to attend CERT training during regular working hours. Scheduling of 5 hour sessions once per week for four weeks helps reduce the impact on departmental operations.

CERT training is conducted by members of the Seton Hall University community and the South Orange Fire Department. Graduates of the training program receive a set of CERT safety equipment from the NJ Office of Emergency Management.

Additional specialized training and periodic exercises are offered to CERT graduates to increase their skills and maintain their interest in the program.