NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) - Plantation Village is now the first senior care community in southeastern North Carolina to receive a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) certification.
Thirty staff members and eight residents completed training on disaster response skills including fire safety, first aid and light search and rescue efforts.
While the community did evacuate 300 people to Greensboro during Hurricane Florence, Executive Director Zane Bennett still wonders ‘what if?’
“We evacuated for 12 days because like many, we could not get back into the Cape Fear region, and you have to start to think ‘well what if we didn’t evacuate? What if the storm was different, the DNA of the storm was different and we stayed local? Would we have enough food, would we have enough labor, would we have enough water to make sure that we had business continuity?’ So those are the things we’re thinking about and CERT gives us more resources and training for that,” Bennett said.
Bennett and the entire administrative team participated in the training. They could now be called upon during times of disaster.
“I think what I learned is these are skills that I can take with me to -- whether there’s an incident on 17, or there’s something on my way home -- I can use these skills and I think anyone in the community can sleep a little better at night knowing there’s 38 individuals who just went through this training who can be there to help in an emergency,” he said.
Plantation Village says its the only senior care community with CERT certification in southeastern North Carolina. However, there are other groups with certification in the Landfall and Porters Neck neighborhoods of New Hanover County.