Tuesday, October 30, 2012

How is our CERT family?

Morning Folks,

This is the only way I can check on our CERT family. I don't have the master list of all the CERT members, Dana and Jeffrey do.
So, how have you fared? How did Hurricane Sandy affect you? Do you have any damage to your home or vehicles? Have you or a family member been injured? Do you need some help?
Did your CERT skills come into play during or after the storm?
Let us know.  pio@fairfaxcountycert.org

Monday, October 29, 2012

Media Opportunityy: Fairfax County Virginia Task Force One at 10:30 a.m.


Media Availability

10:30 a.m.

14725 Flint Lee Drive, Chantilly, VA

Fairfax County, Virginia Task Force One—Urban Search and Rescue

Status: Activated and mobilized, but not deployed.

Media are welcome to visit the staging area for video, photos, and interviews.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

As Hurricane Sandy Approaches, FEMA Urges Residents to Follow Directions of Local Officials

WASHINGTON - At the direction of President Obama, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is coordinating the federal government's assistance and preparations to support states affected by Hurricane Sandy. Today, the President joined an operations briefing at the National Response Coordination Center at FEMA Headquarters in Washington D.C. During the briefing the President received an update on preparedness activities underway from Administrator Craig Fugate and FEMA Regional Administrators, and an update on the storm from National Hurricane Center Director Dr. Rick Knabb. The President continues to direct Administrator Fugate to ensure that federal partners continue to bring all available resources to bear to support state and local responders in potentially affected areas along the East Coast as they prepare for severe weather. FEMA has already deployed teams and has pre-staged resources to potentially affected states and areas ahead of the storm and FEMA continues to urge residents in potentially affected areas to be prepared.

"As conditions worsen along the Mid-Atlantic and other parts of the East Coast, residents need to listen to the direction of local officials," urged Fugate. "This is a large storm and the potential impacts from wind, coastal flooding, inland flooding, rain and snow will affect many states.  If you're on the coast, it's time to act and follow evacuation orders. If you're inland, now is the time to make final preparations.  Be ready for power outages and stock up on emergency supplies of food, water, medications, and other supplies."

Today, the President declared an emergency for the State of Maryland.  The President's action authorizes FEMA to coordinate all disaster relief efforts to provide assistance for required emergency measures to save lives and to protect property and public health and safety in the City of Baltimore and all counties in the State of Maryland.

FEMA and its federal partners remain in close coordination with states and tribal governments and continue to coordinate resources to provide support as needed. FEMA Incident Management Assistance Teams and liaison officers have deployed to potentially affected states along the East Coast to support preparedness activities and ensure there are no unmet needs.  Mobile Emergency Response Support (MERS) personnel and teams are in place or are en route to Delaware, the District of Columbia, New York, New Jersey, North Carolina and Pennsylvania to support the states with secure and non-secure voice, video, and information services, operations, and logistics support to state response operations, and with any potential requests for assistance.

According to the NOAA National Weather Service 2 p.m. advisory, hurricane force winds are expected along portions of the coast between Chincoteague, Va. And Chatham, Mass.  Tropical Storm force winds are expected north of Chatham to Merrimack River, Mass., the lower Chesapeake Bay and south of Chincoteague to Duck, North Carolina.  Hurricane Sandy is expected to produce significant precipitation over widespread areas causing inland flooding, coastal storm surge, snow, and possible power outages. 

Individuals in the region should continue to monitor NOAA Weather Radio and their local news for updates and directions provided by their local officials.  State and local officials make determinations and announcements about evacuations. We urge the public to listen to the instructions of officials, and if told to evacuate - evacuate.

The FEMA smartphone app provides safety tips and displays open shelter information at www.fema.gov/smartphone-app. To find an open Red Cross shelter, download the Red Cross Hurricane app or visit redcross.org.

To support potential pre- and post storm evacuations, in coordination with U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) through Emergency Support Function 8, FEMA has the capability to activate ambulance contracts to support state requirements to evacuate patients if needed and requested.

In anticipation of the potential impact from the storm, the American Red Cross mobilized hundreds of disaster workers, readying shelters and coordinating efforts with community partners in potentially affected states and the Department of Health and Human Services has two 50-person disaster medical assistance teams pre-staged in the mid-Atlantic, prepared to deploy quickly along the East Coast if needed. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers deployed temporary emergency power teams along the East Coast.  Power teams consist of planning and response teams and resource support staff to assist with critical infrastructure. 

The Department of Energy (DOE) is working closely with FEMA, and in support of state and local officials who are responsible for working with utilities as they prepare for storms, deployed emergency response personnel to FEMA Regional Response Coordination Centers (RRCC) in Massachusetts, New York, and Pennsylvania, and additional personnel are on standby to assist.  DOE is working with states and local partners as the electric industry begins the process of pre-mobilizing storm and field personnel to assist in power restoration efforts. 

U.S. Northern Command deployed Regional Defense Coordinating Officers (DCO), and portions of the Defense Coordinating Element (DCE), in advance of the storm, to validate, plan and coordinate potential Department of Defense (DOD) support of FEMA's response operations and to facilitate DOD support of life-saving and response operations.  FEMA and DOD are establishing Incident Support Bases in Westover, Mass. and Lakehurst, New Jersey to position supplies including water, meals, blankets and other resources closer to potentially impacted areas, should they be needed.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is monitoring the storm and will take steps to prepare and protect FAA facilities and equipment that are in the projected path of the storm, including control towers, radars and navigational aids. The FAA's top operational priority is to quickly re-establish air traffic service to support disaster relief efforts. The FAA Air Traffic System Command Center will maintain constant communications with the airlines, the military, business aviation and airports in the storm's path. They will advise the FAA about their flight schedules and plans to evacuate aircraft from affected areas and the FAA will share information about the status of the air traffic control system and availability of air routes.

Preparedness Actions

Take Action. Time is limited to prepare your family, home or business to lessen the impact of severe weather.  Coastal and inland residents should ensure that their families have an emergency plan and emergency kits in their homes and cars.  Some of the items in a basic emergency kit include: one gallon of water per person per day, for drinking and sanitation; at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food; battery-powered radio and a NOAA Weather Radio; flashlight and extra batteries; and First Aid kit. 

Those in areas where the storm is expected to produce snow should also have supplies in their emergency kits such as rock salt or environmentally safe products to melt ice on walkways, snow shovels, adequate clothing and blankets to keep warm and heating fuel like dry, seasoned wood for the fireplace or wood-burning stove. Both hurricanes and winter storms often cause power outages, take steps now to ensure you can sustain yourself for at least 72 hours if needed.  

More information about what to do before, during and after a disaster can also be found visiting www.ready.gov and www.listo.gov. The FEMA mobile site (http://m.fema.gov), smartphone app (www.fema.gov/smartphone-app), and text messages (www.fema.gov/text-messages) also provide regular updates. Sharing information using social media tools is also a good way for residents to stay informed. Follow FEMA online at www.fema.gov/blogwww.twitter.com/femawww.facebook.com/fema, and www.youtube.com/fema

FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.


Friday, October 26, 2012

CERT Pot Luck

CERT Pot Luck

When: November 4, 2012, 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm

Where: Annandale Volunteer Fire Station, FS 408

            7128 Columbia Pike, Annandale VA

We are holding our first CERT Pot Luck social for all old, new and future CERT volunteers, family, and friends.

Please RSVP padavisjr@aol.com and let us know how many plan to attend and what you plan to bring as a dish, drink or dessert.

 We would suggest that if your last name starts with the letter A to G then you could bring a main dish, no time to make something? Bring a bucket of chicken; if it starts with a G to P, then you can bring dessert and P to Z, refreshments.

Plan to come celebrate being a volunteer in the CERT program of Fairfax County.

To RSVP, please email your response directly to Paul D. at padavisjr@aol.com.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Hurricane Sandy Preparedness info from Fairfax County OEM

3 Ways to Prepare for Hurricane Sandy

Posted 4:44 p.m.

Hurricane Sandy continues its move north and the National Weather Service reports it will impact the Washington region. However, the exact impact and timing are not yet known. The range of impacts could be low, such as minor coastal flooding, to significant if there’s a direct hit, which is still within the cone of uncertainty. With a direct hit, we would experience significant flooding, power outages and tropical storm winds.

At conference call with regional governments this afternoon, the National Weather Service says the most likely scenario for our area right now is a slow, long-lasting system with tropical storm winds, heavy rain/flooding and moderate tidal flooding. The National Weather Service will not have a definitive scenario until at least Saturday.

So while it’s too early to identify path and impacts, it’s never too early to get ready, especially with the uncertainty surrounding this storm.

There are a few things you can do now in advance of the storm. We need the whole community — families, businesses, nonprofits, faith communities and other key groups — to prepare:

1.) Get Emergency Supplies

  • Buy extra water. One gallon of water per person (and pet) per day is recommended for drinking and sanitation.
  • Buy an extra bag (or cans) of food for your pet.
  • Withdraw some extra cash from your bank or ask for cash back at a grocery store so you can make purchases in case there are power outages.
  • Review your infant and young children supplies essential to you as a parent or someone who may be taking care of a young child.
  • Pickup an extra package or two of the most commonly used batteries in your home.
  • Purchase extra over-the-counter medicines such as aspirin or children’s medications you frequently use.

2.) Clear Leaves From Storm Drains.

It’s fall and our trees are showing off their reds and oranges, but many leaves have hit the ground. Keep storm drains clear in case we receive inches of rain. If you live within a homeowner’s association or apartment complex check in to see if they plan to clear common areas.

3.) Stay Informed
  • Sign up for our Community Emergency Alert Network text/email updates that will provide weather alerts and other critical information.
  • If you use social media sites, then follow us on Facebook or Twitter. Be an information ambassador for us and share/retweet updates. If using Twitter, help us see local tweets by using the hashtag #ffxstorm
  • Keep up to date with local conditions – follow TV and radio reports from your area, or visit www.weather.gov (http://mobile.weather.gov on your phone) for the latest forecast.
  • Download our county mobile apps with emergency information and get the American Red Cross “Hurricane” appAndroid, Apple.
For more tips, visit www.fairfaxcounty.gov/emergency

FEMA Closely Monitoring Hurricane Sandy


Through our regional offices in Atlanta, Philadelphia, New York City and Boston, we continue to closely monitor Hurricane Sandy as it moves north in the Atlantic Ocean. We remain in close coordination with state and tribal emergency management partners in Florida and the potentially affected southeast, Mid-Atlantic and New England states. Administrator Craig Fugate provided some important reminders earlier today.

"As Hurricane Sandy proceeds closer toward southeast Florida, residents should listen to local officials for updates and follow their instructions. As the storm moves northward, it serves as a reminder that we all need to be prepared for severe weather. Now is the time to update your family communication plans, check your supplies, and stay informed. A hurricane isn't a point on a map - it's a big storm and its impact will be felt far from the center. FEMA is in contact with states and tribal governments and stands ready to support their preparedness efforts."

I’d like to emphasize the Administrator’s last point about the size of these storms. The storm’s future path is still uncertain, but National Weather Service forecasts show that Hurricane Sandy may impact additional states throughout the Southeast, Mid-Atlantic and Northeast into early next week. This means millions along the East Coast should closely watch the progression of Hurricane Sandy as it moves northward. Going into tonight and tomorrow, the Florida Keys, southeast and east-central Florida are expected to experience heavy rainfall and high winds.

As Hurricane Sandy moves northward and closer to Florida, we encourage residents to prepare now for tropical storm and hurricane conditions. Here are a few safety tips if you are in the potentially affected area:

·         For the severe weather forecast for your area, listen to your NOAA Weather Radio, local media and forecast reports.

·         Check on the items in your family’s emergency kit - Remember to include items like a flashlight, hand-crank radio, and a solar powered cell phone charger to your emergency kit. Hurricanes often bring power outages, so be sure your emergency kit can sustain your family for at least 72 hours after the storm.

·         Make a plan for how you will contact friends and family in the event of an emergency.

·         Flooding is often the most significant threat from hurricanes and tropical storms - avoid walking or driving through flooded areas – it only takes six inches of fast-moving flood water to knock over an adult and two feet to move a vehicle.

·         As always, follow the direction of local officials. Don’t put yourself at risk, if they give the order to evacuate, do so immediately.

Visit www.ready.gov/hurricanes for more tips on preparing your home and family for the effects of a hurricane or tropical storm.

Last Updated:

10/25/2012 - 18:05

Posted on Thu, 10/25/2012 - 17:55

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

CERT Steering Committee Meeting Tonight

CERT steering committee meeting is tonight, 16 October at 7 pm at the Government Center, rm 232.
This meeting is open to the public. The Government Center is at 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Fire Station Open Houses, CERT help needed for 6 stations this Saturday

Calling All CERT's! We still need more CERT members to help at the Fire Station Open Houses. Having at least 4 CERT members per station at any given time would be best. If you could just do a couple of hours in the morning or afternoon, we can use you. All day participation, the fire dept. will feed you! This event is on October 13, Saturday,9:30-4:00 pm at most stations.

Springfield would like us there at 0730 to help with set-up.

Did you know that during the derecho storm when the 911 system went down, we were really close to being called out to the fire stations? These Fire Station Open Houses are a great way to get to know the Fire and Rescue personnel at these stations. If the station is the one that responds to your neighborhood, that’s an even better reason to volunteer as a CERT for their open house.

Here are the stations that we will have an outreach/ possible operational role:


Vienna/ 02

Burke/ 14


Fair Oaks/ 21


email pio@fairfaxcountycert.org and certvolunteercoordinator@fairfaxcountycert.org to volunteer.