Bridgeport Hosts Community Emergency Response Training - Clarksburg, Morgantown: News, Sports, Weather

Bridgeport Hosts Community Emergency Response Training

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The city of Bridgeport hosted training today for the Community Emergency Response Team.

The training started last Tuesday and was held for three sessions

This was the final day for the course.

The public got to learn what to do in case of a disaster and how they can help when emergency personnel can't get to everyone.

Harrison County Director of CERT Ray Shaw, said the public walks away with valuable skills.


Shaw said, "Simple search and rescue to find people in moderately or lightly damaged buildings, how to put out small fires, how to do first aid, and triage.  It's community helping community, and I want them to go back to their homes and get their families prepared for any disaster that might come our way."

Shaw hosts these training courses a few times a year. 


When disaster strikes first responders might not be able to get to every area of a community, that's where the public comes in if they are emergency response trained.

"We take individuals or organizations in the community and teach the basics of disaster response, recovery and preparedness," said Shaunda Rauch, Bridgeport Director of Emergency Services.

More than 20 people participated in the class on Tuesday. It was the first of three sections needed to graduate into the Community Emergency Response Team.

Rauch said the public gets to learn the basics needed when disaster hits.

"We're teaching them basic triage, which is how they can sort and know who needs immediate attention and who needs delayed attention. The basics of first aid and CPR and fire suppression," Rauch explained.

Rauch said the class is designed to prepare the community for all types of disasters to keep themselves and their family safe.

The program consists of both classroom learning and hands-on activities which Rauch said are important.

"It's one thing to have knowledge or hear about something, and you can watch a Powerpoint or read it in a book but when you actually have to put those skills into practice you find out it's a little bit different than what someone was telling you. To be able to practice and exercise what you learned helps to engrain it in your mind," Rauch said.

Rauch said sometimes it's hard to reach everyone in the community during a bad weather event or other disaster, so getting the public trained is important.

"The scope is so beyond of what we are capable of responding to. We want to help everyone immediately but that's not the reality of the situation so by doing this we are empowering the individual citizen to take care of themselves and their family and that is priceless," explained Rauch.

The CERT program will continue on Thursday and again next Tuesday.

Click here for more information on the CERT program and Bridgeport Emergency Services.