Emergency Preparedness

When 911 is unable to respond,
do you and your neighbors
know what to do?
 case of a major community-wide emergency like an earthquake,

Place an 'I'm OK' sign in your window, if that is the case.  Write the time and date on your ‘OK’ sign; aftershocks and subsequent events may change your status.

If you need help, place a sign saying 'Need Help' in your window. 

In preparation for an emergency, you should:
  • Know how to prevent contamination of your house water,
  • Know when and how to turn off your gas, and electricity, and
  • Arrange a local meeting place and an out-of-state contact for your family,
  • Get CERT training (Community Emergency Response Team) and Map Your Neighborhood training. Your neighbors will be the ones to help you in a disaster.  Do they know what to do?
  • Have the following basic supplies in a safe place:
Water - allow at least 1 gallon a day per family member (including pets), for 10-14 days (yes, it used to be only three days),
Basic foodstuffs that are easy to prepare and use minimal water in cooking or heating,
First aid, medicines, disinfectants and sanitary supplies,
Camping gear, including tents, sleeping pads and cook stoves,
Battery-powered radios and lighting as well as plenty of spare batteries,
Tools, shovels and other hardware,
Leather gloves,
or sturdy shoes,
Paper, pens
- small bills and change

Walnut Creek CERT volunteers Dee Logan and Terrie MacFarlane teamed up with Walnut Creek TV to produce a short video on how to build a disaster preparedness kit. It plays regularly on Walnut Creek TV (Comcast Channel 28, Astound 26, or Rossmoor Comcast 26), but you can also see it whenever you want at www.walnut-creek.org/cert.  Click on Walnut Creek TV then scroll down and click on Get Ready Walnut Creek: Emergency Kit.

The goal of CERT is to teach people the skills they need to pull together and safely help themselves and their community in the event of disaster, as the demand for emergency services will likely exceed available resources. 

CERTs go through a basic 20-hour training, including All-Hazards Disaster Preparedness, Fire Safety & Utility Control, Introduction to FRS (Family Radio System), Emergency Medical Operations, Light Search and Rescue, CERT Team Organization, the Incident Command System, and culminating in a CERT Drill.  Upon completion, CERT graduates are sworn in as a volunteer Disaster Service Worker for the City of Walnut Creek.  They then are connected with other CERTs in their area. The goal is to have trained volunteer teams in all 9 of the CERT Areas identified in Walnut Creek, with emergency supplies stored around the City for CERTs to use.

Walnut Creek has 9 CERT Areas.  We are part of the Tice Unit; including Tice Valley, Parkmead and Saranap areas.

For CERT training and schedule for Walnut Creek, click here.

To register:
E-mail CERT@walnut-creek.org with your home phone number, and home address or call (925) 256-3556. You may also take CERT in another city if space is available.  For Concord, call (925) 603-5933.

The Map Your Neighborhood program is about building and strengthening disaster readiness among immediate neighbors.  Response in the first hour after a disaster is the key to survival.  It may not depend on what you know but what your neighbors know. 

Map Your Neighborhood involves getting together with your neighbors for a 90-minute, guided information session to learn how to take care of your own family and property first and then reach out to your group of neighbors. 

Typically 15-20 homes are in a group.  You are taught the steps to take.  In disasters, rational thought goes out the window; we are unable to think our best; without training we tend to act on instinct of fight or flight.  Having guidelines helps us to know exactly what to do to save lives, reduce significant injury and save property. 

Bring the MYN program to your neighbors.
MYN leader classes are available to CERT graduates.  Click here for information only on the Map Your Neighborhood program. 
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