First, I want to send a HUGE thank you out to the volunteers with our Community Emergency Response Team. These dedicated individuals were at the EMA last night until 8:30 pm preparing the equipment and trailer for the Mass Vaccination Event with the Missouri National Guard coming up on Sunday, March 7.
From the information we have gathered from Lake Regional Health Service, who is handling emergency management for the event, our CERTs will be operating a warming (or cooling, depending on the weather) courtesy tent for our first responders and the guard on traffic control, and preparing and serving meals for the event for the hospital staff, health department, National Guardsmen, volunteers, and others who are working so hard to pull off this event. Our volunteers may be asked to observe people after they receive their shots or help to clean things between usage. We’ve also instructed them to be helpful and do whatever they may be asked to do by the staff, all in the name of making the experience more tolerable for the residents and visitors coming in for vaccinations. Our CERTs will be wearing bright yellow CERT shirts (and maybe even safety vests), so be sure to say hi when you see them!
Second, we are working with the Camden County Sheriff’s Office and fire departments in the county to start clearing out equipment from the EMA. We are working on upgrading emergency equipment and resources for Camden County for large-scale emergencies, but to do that, we need to release outdated, broken, or obsolete equipment. After the county has gone through the items, the remainder will be donated or destroyed (ALL computer towers/laptops deemed unfit will be destroyed for security purposes.) and we will begin to phase in more updated technology, tools, equipment, and more to better serve and care for the residents and visitors of Camden County and Region F! We’ll keep you updated on that project!
Third, we have almost fully updated the county contact list for Nixle and will soon move on to more specified contact lists. The Emergency Operations Center list is already underway (as a good chunk of the names are from the county list) and we hope to complete that by the end of March.
Fourth, we are working with our CERT and ARES volunteer groups to really begin incorporating them in tabletop and full-scale exercises. These volunteer groups are right there in the trenches with us during large-scale emergencies and thus will receive the same training many of the other EOC staff go through. Our CERT will now have a specialized sub-group of volunteers specifically trained as EOC staff! We are excited about their willingness to learn and help!
Stay tuned for more updates!