Students use quick-thinking in response to disaster drill - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Students use quick-thinking in response to disaster drill

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The Teen Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) from Brunswick County Early College High School took part in a life-like disaster drill Friday. The Teen Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) from Brunswick County Early College High School took part in a life-like disaster drill Friday.
Students were challenged to respond to a disaster scenario created by EMS supervisors. Students were challenged to respond to a disaster scenario created by EMS supervisors.

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WECT) – The Teen Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) from Brunswick County Early College High School took part in a life-like disaster drill Friday.

Students were challenged to respond to a disaster scenario created by EMS supervisors. CERT members didn't know specifics of the drill before the event so they had to think of their feet.

All students have been trained in the basics of disaster preparedness, including fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations.

This is the third year CERT members have participated in the disaster drill. In the past, students have been challenged with tornadoes, collapsed buildings, and missing persons.

On Saturday, the students were challenged with a post-tornado drill including a collapsed building on the campus of Brunswick Community College.

Sarah Hackley is a 15 year old sophomore in high school.  She served as the incident commander.

"I had to tell everybody what to do to make sure they're doing their job the whole time," said Hackley.  "I had to make sure triage were doing their job, treatment officers were in the right place and had to make sure the ambulances had a place to come in."

Organizers say they were impressed by the students' performance.  Brunswick County EMS Divison Director, Brian Watts says this type of training is not easy.

"Knowing that if something would happen here on this campus and we had this real life situation, I think these kids could take care of it," said Watts.  "That's the most rewarding thing."

For students like Hackley, this type of training could lead to a career.

"I could definitely see myself in an EMS position," said Hackley.  "Before this class, I never dreamed of it.  But this feeling of empowerment and being able to help people is a great feeling."

In order to become a full service member of the Brunswick County EMS team, anyone interested must pass an 18 month training course.

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