On Wednesday, May 15, Anne Arundel-Annapolis Community Emergency Response Team (AAACERT) President Paul Bowling conducted the group’s monthly training, focusing this iteration on CERT safety in incidents of improvised explosive devices and bombings. The training was held at Anne Arundel Community College.

Among the many new facts Paul shared with the group, he reminded attendees of their first priority – safety – per basic CERT training, when responding to an incident of any type. The group also reviewed the “RAIN” protocol for dealing with potentially damaging devices or substances.

R Recognize (Know that a device or substance may be dangerous.)

AAvoid (Leave the immediate area right away.)

IIsolate (Move yourself away from the suspected device, and try to keep anyone else from going near it.)

NNotify (Call 911, and tell the dispatcher exactly what you have found and where it is so the proper, trained authorities can come and handle the situation.)

Approximately 28 participants attended the training, which served as a model of inter-organizational collaboration. The group included members of AAACERT, Upper Marlboro CERT, Greenbelt CERT, and Berwyn Heights CERT, as well as Amateur Radio Emergency Services (ARES) members from Prince Georges and Anne Arundel counties.

Photo: Instructor Paul Bowling shared some data collected by the New Mexico Tech Energetic Materials Research and Testing Center.