MALIBU—The City announced the return of Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training free of charge via in-person classes from August 17 through September 26. The program offers training in basic first aid, search and rescue, disaster preparedness, disaster psychology, and more.

“Following a major disaster, professional first responders who provide fire and medical services may not be able to fully meet the demand for services,” the city’s webpage for CERT reads. 

“Factors such as communications failures, road blockages, and the number of victims, may prevent people from accessing the emergency services they have come to expect at a moment’s notice when 911 is called.” 

The objective of CERT is to expand “community-wide preparedness,” offering the public knowledge of how to safely respond during a natural disaster or accident until officials can arrive.

The CERT program was developed in 1985 by the Los Angeles City Fire Department. It has since been adopted and enhanced by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Fire Academy. The course is now recognized nationwide, and over 50,000 citizens have been trained to date. 

From August 27 through September 26, CERT classes will be held at Malibu City Hall, Tuesday evenings from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. with the exception of the first (August 17) and second to last (September 21) classes which will be held on Thursdays. Only one class can be missed in order to receive the certification.

The structure of the classes is broken down into several modules:

Disaster Preparedness

Team Organization

Medical Class #1

Medical Class #2

Disaster Psychology

Fire Safety and Utility Controls

Light Search and Rescue Operations

Terrorism and CERT

Course Review and Disaster Simulation Drill

To learn more and sign up for the CERT program, visit