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#104855 - 09/06/07 07:09 PM CERT & Practical training
adam Offline

Registered: 04/07/03
Posts: 256
Loc: Long Island, NY
I finally found the local contact for CERT in my area. I called to get information on the class. One thing that immediately made me question taking the class was the lack of any practical or hands on training. Having had many first aid/CPR classes I know the importance of actually doing it instead of watching a video of it being done.

The question is how important is practical training? Would you spend one night a week for 13 weeks sitting in classroom listening to a lecture with no hands on experience?


#104868 - 09/06/07 08:33 PM Re: CERT & Practical training [Re: adam]
Blast Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/15/02
Posts: 3561
Loc: Spring, Texas
No way in hell. Tying a bandage or putting an arm in a sling looks easy on video but doing it in real life shows you how tricky it actually is. There are few "second takes" in first aid.

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#104872 - 09/06/07 09:07 PM Re: CERT & Practical training [Re: Blast]
jmarkantes Offline

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 138
Loc: Portland, OR, USA
Our CERT training (NET in Portland) had some hands-on in most classes, and a final exercise on the last day where we were able to practice everything. They also have more training available year round after your initial classes. I thought pretty much all the training nation-wide was somewhat standardized through DHS, so figure there'll be some hands-on.

This saturday actually there's an 8 hour mockup where we'll be able to do everything and then some. Should be fun.

#104875 - 09/06/07 09:47 PM Re: CERT & Practical training [Re: adam]
Schwert Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/13/02
Posts: 905
Loc: Seattle, Washington
While the CERT training packages are pretty much standard, each jurisdiction likely has leaway in how the material is presented.

Ours was about 50/50 coursework and hands on. Without the hands on it would have been less than ideal.

#104876 - 09/06/07 09:49 PM Re: CERT & Practical training [Re: jmarkantes]
SwampDonkey Offline

Registered: 07/08/07
Posts: 1268
Loc: Northeastern Ontario, Canada
Hi Adam,

My job requires I do a lot of yearly requalification and the more realistic/practical our training program has become the more qualified and capable we are to overcome difficulties. The way our training program has improved is by increasing the amount of hands-on, high stress scenerios that we are confronted with.

Early this spring I became involved in a serious life-threatening situation and found that I instantly reverted back to my training; the situation did not feel unknown to me, because I had been there before (in training) and worked through it then.

I have never taken CERT training but would recommend that you take the course which would provided you with the most hands-on, practical training as possible.

Take care,


#104877 - 09/06/07 10:00 PM Re: CERT & Practical training [Re: SwampDonkey]
ScouterMan Offline

Registered: 08/19/07
Posts: 65
Loc: Massachusetts, USA
I can't imagine taking any safety-related training, regardless of subject, without at least some hands-on training. I completely agree with Blast. Trying to do anything in an emergency situation without having tried it before is asking for trouble.

I'm a haz mat guy and I couldn't imagine trying to do a full Class A dressout in Alpha suits and forced air without having practiced it several times.

#104888 - 09/07/07 12:26 AM Re: CERT & Practical training [Re: ScouterMan]
MDinana Offline

Registered: 03/08/07
Posts: 2186
Loc: Bluegrass
Like others say, hands-on is crucial. Probably more so, and not said outright, is that hands-on training is practically useless unless you continue to practice. Maybe not every day for the rest of your life, but at least until you've got it down cold. Think of riding a bike; it may be years, but you can do it again. Why? Cuz most kids ride for daily for several years.

ScouterMan mentions his need to practice, and I concur. I've had some Hazmat training, with the Class A suit, but only twice. I'd never try to do it in real life, simply becuase I never got it down well the first time.

I'd try looking for something better, maybe via FDNY (despite the probably long commute for you), or in NJ.

#104926 - 09/07/07 12:07 PM Re: CERT & Practical training [Re: MDinana]
adam Offline

Registered: 04/07/03
Posts: 256
Loc: Long Island, NY
In the end I decided to postpone taking the class. Further inquires have yielded a bit more information, they may have practical training available in the future. I’m going to “gently” suggest they work a little harder on implementing practical training into the class as soon as possible.


#104932 - 09/07/07 01:59 PM Re: CERT & Practical training [Re: adam]

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 1841

it looks like that might be a class thats hands out the
"paper"you need to move on to more advanced CERT.


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