Community Emergency Response Teams

The Office of Emergency Management is no longer offering Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training. While CERT training can be very valuable, it is not necessarily the most accessible means of delivering disaster skills training. Not everyone in the community that could benefit from disaster skills training is able to dedicate the approximately 20 hours required to complete CERT training. Those same time constraints also limit how often we at the Office or Emergency Management or other City departments can offer CERT training due to limited staff and resources. 

CERT training is a national curriculum that prepares people to respond to and cope with the aftermath of a disaster. CERT uses both classroom and skill building curriculum to prepare participants to respond to immediate needs following a major disaster.The full CERT training course is made up of nine modules and takes approximately 20 hours to complete. 

CERT course content includes:

  • Emergency Preparedness
  • Fire Suppression and Utility Control
  • Incident Command System
  • Light Search and Rescue
  • Disaster Medical Response
  • Disaster Psychology
  • Terrorism Awareness

Our goal at the Office of Emergency Management is to ensure that residents of Seattle have the knowledge and skills necessary to remain self-sufficient after a disaster. Because of this we have been looking at what core skills are the most beneficial after a disaster occurs. Our SNAP (Seattle Neighborhood's Actively Prepare) program highlights several priority areas; fire suppression and utility control, first aid, and light search and rescue. In order to reach the greatest number of people possible and complement our existing preparedness efforts, we feel it is important to focus on these skills that are most critical to a household and neighborhood response.  Therefore in 2016, the Office of Emergency Management will concentrate on offering more accessible training on these core skills throughout the City. This approach will allow us to reach the greatest number of people and complement our existing SNAP program and other preparedness efforts. 

Please be sure to check out our events calendar at the beginning of 2016 for up to date information on available trainings. 

If you still want to pursue CERT training, neighboring jurisdictions do offer CERT training and most will allow people from outside of their jurisdiction to participate. To find other CERT programs in the area go to