Training offered to assist first responders

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A 20-hour class hosted by East County Fire & Rescue will prepare folks to assist first responders in an emergency.

The $30 Community Emergency Response Team course will start Oct. 19. It will be held at Station 91, 600 N.E. 267th Ave. in Camas near Grove Field. Class will be from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 19 and Oct. 26 and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20 and 27.

Participants in the class will learn about disaster preparedness, including lessons in suppression of small fires, light search and rescue, team organization and disaster medical operations.

The class will prepare the average person to be an asset instead of a liability to first responders in an emergency, said Rick Knapp, spokesman for the organization.

"They're not going to be manning firetrucks or anything," Knapp said, but they will be able to assist police and firefighters.

He said past recruits have helped the agency staff a cooling center, filled and placed sandbags in flood areas and opened an emergency operations center.

Once they complete training they'll be registered with the state as volunteer emergency workers, Knapp said.

The agency has been offering the training for about 10 years.

For more information or to register, call 360-834-4908 or visit East County Fire & Rescue.

Payment is due at registration.