Everett Graduates First Ever All Spanish Speaking Only CERT Class In Washington State

November 17, 2017

Everett, Everett Fire

CERT

Instructor Bronson Pearson and members of the first Spanish speaking only CERT class in Washington State.

Twice a year Everett’s Department of Emergency Management holds a CERT training. CERT is short for Community Emergency Response Team. Interested members of the community are invited to participate in 8 weeks of classes learning about how Everett responds to emergencies such as earthquakes, storms or other events that can cause widespread destruction in the city.

This year Everett’s Director of Emergency Management, Brent Stainer said his department wanted to make sure more of the community was involved and they reached out to Everett’s Hispanic community about holding a class just for those who spoke Spanish as their primary language. “We got a great response,” said Stainer.

Starting September 28th more than a dozen students showed up for the class. Over the next two weeks the class grew to 24 students. While Stainer usually taught the twice-yearly class this year Everett Firefighter Bronson Pearson led the course. Pearson is fluent in Spanish. He received assistance from Everett Police Officer Omar Estrada who is also fluent in Spanish. Additional assistance for the class was provided by Director Stainer, Emergency Planning and Operations Coordinator Sarah LaVelle and Public Education Coordinator Rachael Doniger along with subject-matter experts from various City of Everett departments.

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CERT members determine injuries of victims.

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Director Stainer gives a team their next assignment.

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A CERT team member uses a fire extinguisher to put out a fire.

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A team member operates a fully charged fire hose.

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Teams search rubble for victims.

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Police give a team assignments on securing a set of damaged buildings.

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A team debriefs after an exercise.

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The latest CERT class with (seated from left to right) Everett Fire Chief Tim Key, Public Education Coordinator Rachael Doniger and lead instructor Bronson Pearson

Last night was final exam night for the class. In addition to the written test there was a practical exercise held at the Everett Fire Department’s training center. The students worked through a mock earthquake disaster going through various exercises including looking for injured in rubble, securing a site, identifying injuries and the type of aid needed, putting out spot fires with an extinguisher and even operating a fully charged fire hose.

“This was the first Spanish-speaking only CERT class in Washington State and it went great,” Chief Stainer told MyEverettNews.com. “When we talk about community we want to make sure we get all of Everett involved and this is a great start in helping first responders achieve that goal.”

The next CERT class will be sometime in early 2018 and there is talk of having more classes for people who have English as their second language. For more information about Everett’s CERT program click here.

Here are some MyEverettNews.com photos from last night’s final exercise. Click photo to enlarge.


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About myeverettnews

My Everett News is a hyperlocal news website featuring breaking news and events in Everett, WA. We also cover City of Everett information and items of interest to those who live and work in Everett. It's written by Leland Dart a former Snohomish County based radio reporter born and raised in Everett.

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