Are you ready to help your neighborhood in a disaster? You can be.

Let us talk for a moment about something we can all agree on: We’d all like to survive a disaster. And help others in the aftermath.

A major earthquake does not hold open houses. Its public comment period is actually aftershocks, and fires.

Nevertheless, we can be prepared to help.

The Seattle Office of Emergency Management (OEM) is holding Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training this fall, and applications are due this week.

Via email (from OEM and the Seattle Neighborhoods Actively Prepare [SNAP] program):

Following a major disaster, emergency services that people have come to rely on will be overwhelmed and unable to meet the increased demand. The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Training is a series of courses that are intended to prepare people to take action in the immediate aftermath of a disaster. The training is a combination of skills based classes that will teach participants about Fire Suppression, Utility Control, Light Search and Rescue and Disaster First Aid, in addition to basic tenants of Emergency Preparedness and Emergency Response.

Demand for the training is HIGH. In response to this, and to spread CERT graduates throughout the city, OEM is now taking applications for the training. Applications are due this Friday, August 30.

You can download the application here (super-duper short), fill it out, and either email it to or FAX it to 206-684-5998. Those selected for the training will be notified the week after applications are due (by Friday, September 6).

Each class in the training series builds on the knowledge and training of the class before. Be aware of the training schedule before you consider applying:

Tuesday, October 15, 2013 6-9 PM
Saturday, October 19, 2013 9 AM – 1 PM
Tuesday, October 22, 2013 6-9 PM
Saturday, October 26, 2013 9 AM – 1 PM
Tuesday, October 29, 2013 6-9 PM
Tuesday, November 5, 2013 6-9 PM
Tuesday, November 12, 2013 6-9 PM

You can read about the topics of each training session here, under Delivery.


  1. Hmm, I’m really interested in doing this, but I can’t find the actual instructions for applying anywhere on their site – you’ve got the download, but even if I filled it out, I’m not sure where to send it…

    • The application is in the post above, but I’ll admit the language could be more clear.

      As for where to send it, ACK, I forgot that bit! Fixing now.

  2. Thanks for the post! There are additional upcoming Seattle preparedness events:

    1. The Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drill, Thursday Oct. 17th: Wherever they are at 10:17am on 10/17, millions of people worldwide will practice how to “drop, cover, and hold on” during the annual Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drill. Participating is a great way for your family or organization to be prepared for big earthquakes–wherever you live, work, or travel. For more information, visit

    2. Seattle Emergency Preparedness Summit, Saturday Oct. 19th: Are you a member of a Block Watch, SNAP group (“Seattle Neighborhoods Actively Prepare”), CERT team, or Emergency Communication Hub? Or are you a Seattle resident interested in helping prepare our city? Then you’re invited to take this opportunity to meet with others who are working to prepare their neighborhoods. Help develop ways we can better work together to get Seattle ready for emergencies. Saturday, October 19th, 9am – 12pm at the Seattle Emergency Operations Center (105 5th Ave. S., Suite 300, Seattle, WA 98104). RSVP to (A flyer is available at West Seattle’s preparedness blog:

    3. Seattle Preparedness Gathering for Faith-Based Organizations, Tuesday Oct. 22nd, 12pm-3pm at the American Red Cross (1900 25th Ave S Seattle, WA 98144). Meet members of various faiths interested in helping Seattle become better prepared for disasters. Gather at facilitated tables to discuss general/personal preparedness, agency/organization planning, community engagement, and partnering with other organizations and the government. There will be a number of information booths with information and resources. RSVP by October 15th to

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