Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Deployment : Methods of deploying your CERT Team

Getting deployed is a big goal for any response team. Being able to put your training and preparedness to good use during a real deployment is better experience than any number of exercises.
The catch is that you can't just send out an email and tell your CERT team to meet at the disaster scene and expect to get in. For one, emergency services often sets up a parameter and checks incoming traffic to see if they are supposed to be there and directs spontaneous volunteers to a volunteer intake center. After that there is no guarantee that your CERT team will be deployed as a team and your team members will be spread around the disaster.
FEMA does not require Non-government (volunteer) entities to abide by the FEMA resource management rules but it does highly recommend they do so.
Some of the more important information pieces to prepare for FEMA:
  • Contact information (Phone, address, email ...etc).  As a CERT team your sponsoring organization (Fire department, Police Dept, Park ranger ...etc) will provide this
  • Credentialing of all volunteers (FIPS-201 Compliant ID badges and background checks by a recognized sponsoring agency
  • FEMA Resource credentialing training levels where volunteers training is classified as 1(most trained) to 5 (least trained) (A level 1 is a unit or event leader level 2 is a team leader, level 3 a specialist, level 4 is a technician and level 5 is a basic responder)
  • Unit core capabilities and what emergency support functions those skills are related to
  • Training standards for those capabilities
  • Members with FEMA required training (IS100 & IS700) (plus leadership members with additional FEMA training, IS200, IS775, IS800 ...)
  • The unit to have suitable preparations to deploy a team to the disaster in as little time as possible
Your sponsoring entity will need to have information from the disaster event requesting assistance:
(A mission assignment form is sometimes used for this)
  • A clear and concise mission for your team to accomplish. 
  • Expectation of costs to be paid by disaster authority.
  • An exact destination to travel to
  • An operational time period (duration of deployment)
  • A contact person or group for the team to interface with.
  • A situation explanation to assist your team in preparation. (type of activities needed, conditions, hazards)  usually an IS-201 Initial Action Plan will suffice.
How the request is routed to your organization is also important. Typically the request to deploy goes through the government to the sponsoring agency. However CERT is a non-governmental agency so your CERT team can also be activated via a request from your local or regional VOAD organization. (Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster). So in order to be deployed you need to have a presence in your local VOAD council.

If your CERT team and sponsoring organization doesn't have this level of organization  you are not likely to to be asked to deployed unless the situation is in your sponsoring agencies jurisdiction or you team is processed through a volunteer intake center for that disaster event.



Land SAR credentialing.

EMR credentialing

Communication credentialing (et al)

Johnson County ECS training (comms)

FEMA Resource Credentialing Library
UPDATE: the deployment request form link went bad.  FEMA has a form 10-0-8 but it really is more of an internal form.  

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