Trained Upstate volunteers prepare for mass causality situation - FOX Carolina 21

Trained Upstate volunteers prepare for mass causality situation

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ANDERSON, SC (FOX Carolina) -

A group of community members in the Upstate recognize events like the Boston bombing attack and other disasters of that magnitude could potentially happen locally, so they're pitching in and volunteering to go through intense training to offer an extra helping hand.

The group is called the Community Emergency Response Team, and their training covers search and rescue, fire safety, disaster preparedness and even terrorism.

Saturday they held a disaster scenario to show the community they are ready for whatever may happen. Actors dressed with fake blood and injuries were hidden inside a building, and the CERT members were told a tornado had hit that building.

CERT members entered the disaster-struck building in teams searching for survivors and brought them out into a triage center. Although Saturday's mock emergency was a tornado, this week's events in Boston has been in their minds and in their training.

"We talked about how could CERT have helped in Boston, which they already have a CERT team there," said Anita Donley. "CERT could have been used to create a perimeter so law enforcement can focus at what they need to do."

Donley said that kind of support is crucial in a smaller area like Anderson county.

"Our law enforcement and EMS is overwhelmed when a disaster the size of Boson or Texas happens. The main thing is they need support, more than anything they need manpower," said Donley.

The CERT team said its main focus is getting people out of a dangerous situation safely. They don't perform any major medical procedures or conduct any law enforcement business.

To learn more about becoming a member of the group, click here.

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