The county’s Community Emergency Response Teams are volunteer organizations that assist in times of crisis. This message from the McKinleyville CERT team says that they — and indeed, CERT teams throughout the county — are always looking for new members.

Interested? Here’s what CERT Teams do, and here’s how you can sign up:


While dealing with the pandemic, Humboldt County has also had to deal with other emergencies and disasters such as fires and wildfires, power outages and blackouts, as well as floods. And, here on the North Coast, there is always the possibility of severe winter storms, earthquakes, tsunamis, and active shooter incidents among other unpredictable events. What will you do to help protect yourself, your loved ones, family and friends during such times?

There are CERT Teams (Community Emergency Response Teams) around the County that have been trained in Disaster and Emergency Preparedness to help others during times of need. Many of its members initially joined to learn what to do to keep themselves and their family safe as it was recognized that we cannot help others if we do not know how to help ourselves. If you have an interest in a free training to become a CERT member, the best way to begin would be by contacting Linda Nellist, Chair of the Humboldt CERT Coalition – You will leave the training with information, skills, as well as equipment that could help you and your community achieve successful outcomes during times of disasters.

The McKinleyville CERT alone put in over 380 hours in 2020 helping out Humboldt County. Fortunately, there were no emergency events in McKinleyville itself, but there were significant needs throughout the County and McKinleyville’s team responded in the following ways:

  1. Assisted the Humboldt County Office of Emergency Services (OES) with delivery of PPE (personal protective equipment) to a variety of Medical Centers and Health Care Facilities as well as to Police and Fire Fighters;
  2. Assisted at Food For People by culling and sorting foodstuff to help ensure freshness and viability and delivery during drive-thru distribution;
  3. Assisted the Red Cross during the wildfire season at the Shelter Evacuation Center in Ferndale, including set up and tear down;
  4. Assisted the OES with set-up and upgrade of an Alternative Care Site in the event that our CoVid cases exceed hospital capacity.

In addition, McKinleyville’s CERT Team Leader, Cliff VanCott, helped to train the new Bridgeville CERT team last February, prior to the Co-Vid shut down.

There is always more to report and you will hear from CERT again next month. Until then, stay well and be safe!