Putnam CERT team aids stranded, heatless during recent Polar Vortex

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Volunteers from the Putnam County Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) helped transport and shelter several persons in need during the recent bitter cold snap.

CERT's transport team transported individuals and necessities safely through the county during the winter storm, CERT spokesman Chad Menke noted.

Nurses who were unable to get out of their own driveways to help provide patient care at the hospital were taxied to work by the CERT transport team.

Individuals who had lost electricity and the ability to stay warm were taken to designated shelters in the county by CERT volunteers.

Those volunteers also tackled a number of assignments assisting stranded motorists with 6-10 CERT members working in teams throughout the day to provide assistance during the period of high winds, bitter cold and snow.

The CERT volunteers were dispatched by the Putnam County Emergency Management (EMA) Agency as needed.

CERT is a volunteer organization whose concept was founded by FEMA to fill the need as a backup and certified emergency response team supporting paid professionals within each county.

CERT members' duties consist of search and rescue, security, air operations, property damage assessment, medical services and many other units to support Putnam County and its EMA.

Putnam County's CERT unit is looking to add qualified residents 18 years and older interested in the team concept, all volunteer, certified and trained and having previous experience, appropriate certifications or equipment to enhance CERT contributions to the county.

Interested persons may contact Putnam County CERT at csi@iendeavor.com or call 317-850-0662 to speak to a representative if you have an interest or want to recommend someone to the unit.

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