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Community Emergency Response Team
"Do The Most Good For The Most People"


In the event of a large-scale disaster, the normal Emergency Response Agencies that serve you will be overwhelmed and they might not be able to assist you for up to 72 hours (it’s simply, a supply and demand issue).


The Cambria Fire Department, SLO County Fire Chiefs Assoc. & SLO County Sheriffs Advisory Council, Cambria Healthcare District & Breen Reality

CERT is designed for:

  • Families or Individuals

  • Business Owners and their Employees

  • Neighborhood Groups


CERT is a 20-hour “hands-on” course that teaches individuals to be better prepared in the event of a major disaster, and to form into effective neighborhood teams to assist others.  In the CERT training class you will learn about how and when to turn off your Utilities; Firefighting skills; Medical skills; Hazardous Materials & Terrorism awareness; light Search and Rescue techniques; and most importantly, you’ll learn      SELF RELIANCE.


Cambria Fire Department, 2850 Burton Dr.


Future classes to be announced.  Check back for updated information.  The first class was held during May of 2003.


There is a $40 materials fee that provides you with a student manual and a “CERT bag” that includes a helmet, gloves, vest, goggles, etc.

Since it’s not a matter of “if,” but more a matter of “when,” join the over 450 graduates, (county wide) of the program to better prepare yourself.

To request more information or ask a question, CLICK HERE and select the CERT Coordinator radio button. 
In the pull-down subject menu, select CERT.  
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The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) concept was originally developed and implemented by the City of Los Angeles Fire Department.  The program proved to be very successful.  In the summer of 1996, San Luis Obispo City Fire Department and Cal Poly modified the program slightly to reflect local conditions and concerns.  The Regional program was developed, with the assistance of the City Fire Department, in 2003, for delivery in all the communities of SLO County.


The goal of the CERT program is to help the community to be self-sufficient in a disaster by developing multi-functional teams that are trained in basic skills.  After completing the program, you will be able to function as part of a team or as a leader of on-scene volunteers.


·         To prepare your family and home to survive all types of disasters.

·        To protect yourself first so that you will be able to help others.

·        To assist family and neighbors during the time of a disaster.

·        To work as part of an emergency response team at work or in the community. 

It is hoped that participants from all areas of the community will complete the training.  During the course participants will receive a disaster preparedness manual, a personal emergency supply kit and a Certificate of Completion.

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The CERT training program is a 20 hour course, usually consisting of four evening classes and one Saturday morning class.


·         Orientation and General Overview

·         Earthquake Awareness

·         Preparation/Emergency Supplies

·         Hazard Awareness/Mitigation

·         Emergency Team Concept

·         Utility Control 


·         Disaster Fire Suppression

·         Extinguish a Real Fire using a Fire Extinguisher

·         Hazardous Materials Awareness

·         Terrorism 


·         Disaster Medicine

·         Care of Minor Injuries

·         Triage…How to Decide Who to Treat and When

·         How to Lift Patients

·         Disaster Psychology 


·         Light Search and Rescue Techniques 


·         Team Response and Coordination

·         Hands-on Training:

·         Exterior Building Searches

·         Interior Building Searches

·         Filling Sandbags

·         Proper Lifting Techniques

·         Learn to Lift Large / Heavy Objects

·         Practice Emergency Medical Techniques

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Sixty-three people lost their lives in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake.  Fifty-seven people lost their lives in the 1994 Northridge earthquakes. But none one of these was the “BIG ONE” Experts predict a 60% probability of an earthquake occurring on the San Andreas Fault, which runs through San Luis Obispo County, with in the next 20 years.

Earthquakes are not our only worry, San Luis Obispo County has had its share of major Wild Fires, Hazardous Materials spills, and Transportation Accidents.  Winter storms can have severe impacts on all our communities. 

When the BIG ONE hits, emergency services will be overwhelmed.  Since it’s simply a supply and demand issue, the reality is that it may be up to 72 hours before help can arrive.


Regional CERT Information Line: 788-3449

Cambria Community Healthcare District: 927-8304

Cambria Fire Department: 927-6240


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