Angelina County looking for volunteers to help save lives

By Morgan Thomas - bio | email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) – Angelina County is creating a community emergency response team to support first responders. When police and firefighters are busy, the team will help fill the gaps.

Hudson Police Chief Jeff Burns, along with Emergency Management Coordinator Ricky Connor are leading the team. Connor says there's a need for volunteers who can step in within seconds.

"It can be anything: hurricanes, tornadoes. Any hazmat situations - anywhere we would activate the emergency management center we could use those people," said Conner.

These volunteers won't be on the front lines, without some training.

"There's a six hours training course that will happen on a Saturday. Then we have two or three other trainings going to be set up," said Conner.

Included in the team member training are courses in fire safety, fire suppression and first aid. Some of which will be taught by members of the Lufkin and Hudson Fire Departments.

The training focuses on a critical time-frame: the first 72 hours after a disaster.

"Anything that relates to an emergency response to the average person or that the next door neighbor can do to assist their other neighbors until responders can arrive on scene," said Burns.

In the aftermath of disaster, cert members will help by allowing the professionals to respond to the major emergencies. It's really about being a good neighbor.

"When a disaster occurs the community needs to come together and help each other," said Burns.

Learning from recent disasters, it's training that could save your life... Or the family next door.

No experience is required, but if you're a retired public servant... You'd be a perfect fit for the team.

Joining the CERT team doesn't cost anything, but your time.

To sign up, contact the Angelina County Emergency Management office.

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