by Aaron Grossman, OMVNA CERT chair
Recent earthquakes have reminded people that a big one is likely here as well. OMVNA CERT (Community Emergency Response Team), our own volunteer group, will help out when (not if) that happens. Just be aware of how limited that help will be — OMVNA CERT won’t save your bacon!
Our first job is to get you to prepare before a disaster actually occurs and set aside food, water, and key supplies for your family. When a disaster happens and the phones go out and the police and fire departments are completely overwhelmed, our 50 volunteers will provide basic local communication and coordination via our walkie-talkie network and ham radio link to the Mountain View Office of Emergency Services.
We do not have the means to stockpile food, water, personal medicines, and other key supplies that you may need — that is up to you.
You can also join OMVNA CERT. It is fun, easy, and a great way to meet your neighbors. Most volunteers become a Local Coordinator (LC). They get a backpack disaster kit worth $100 to use as long as they volunteer with us. The kit includes an LED waterproof flashlight, FRS/GMRS 2-way radio, hardhat, a med kit, and many other disaster materials.
During an emergency, LCs only provide assistance they are trained and qualified to give. While we definitely appreciate and welcome medical and other disaster-related skills in an LC, no special training is required, only good common sense.
Outside of disasters, being a CERT LC is a minimal time commitment. Our monthly radio check takes only a few minutes each first Wednesday at 8 pm sharp. The annual meeting early in the year is two hours long and attendance is requested, not mandatory. The same holds for optional drills during the year.
Contact me by email or cell #408 202-2802 for more info.