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CERTain Prep
Cap Pinney | Kalamath Drive


Del Mar CERT members, from left to right, Larry Brooks, Cap Pinney, Wendy Tayer, Frank Johns. Photos George Schneider, a
member of the CERT team from Solana Beach.
Click on image to enlarge.

Your local Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) prepares for the most likely mass casualty events in Del Mar by conducting drills in the Spring and Fall months. The latest drills involved a county-wide exercise held at Cuyamaca College in Spring Valley on April 22 and a graduation exercise at the CERT Academy in Rancho Santa Fe on May 13.

After graduation from the 25-hour Academy program, volunteers are assigned to neighborhood teams which can be activated by the Fire Department or City Manager to assess damage, render first aid, suppress small fires, and communicate with the Emergency Operations Center located at City Hall. The newest graduates from the Academy are Paul and Wynne Spadafora who live on Hoska.

Whether triggered by a disruption of the electrical grid, a major earthquake, fire, tsunami, or nuclear or biological attack, CERT is designed to assist the Fire Department to bring a semblance of order from the initial chaos of such an event.
The county-wide drill involved a simulated terrorist bomb exploding in the campus cafeteria. The scene was made more realistic by victims dressed out in Halloween style make up in a smoke-filled environment. CERT teams suppressed the simulated fire, organized the evacuation of victims, and set up a temporary medical aid station to treat the injuries. After the exercise concluded, the teams joined in an extensive debriefing to share in the lessons learned.

Participants from Del Mar and Solana Beach CERT included Wendy Tayer, Larry Brooks, Frank Johns, George Schneider, and Cap Pinney. They emphasize that emergency response capabilities are enhanced with practice, and encourage all who might be interested in joining CERT to contact Cap Pinney at 858-354-5319.
CERT also conducts a ham radio net for the coastal communities of Del Mar, Solana Beach, Encinitas, and Rancho Santa Fe on the second and fourth Thursday evenings at 7 pm at the Del Mar City Hall. All interested individuals are welcome. The next CERT Academy will be held in October, and a county-wide drill in November.



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