Aransas Pass community volunteers are trained to act in an emergency

Aransas Pass CERT.jpg
Posted at 10:00 AM, Jul 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-22 11:00:28-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The City of Aransas Pass is forming a team called the Community Emergency Response.

It’s made up of community volunteers who aim to help more people before, during, and after disasters.

“Things always work better when a community comes together to help, and that’s something we learned after Harvey," said Mary Gunn, a member of the response team. "That so many came out to help each other.”

As part of Aransas Pass' Community Emergency Response Team, Gunn is dedicating her time to helping her fellow neighbor. Program coordinator and instructor Coury Elorod tells KRIS 6 News that after Hurricane Harvey, the city decided it needed to take action.

“The class will be a supportive role for the responders and helping them out," he said. "Going out in the community doing live search-and-rescue."

There are eight members of this newly launched program. They spend two days a week learning from five local first responders about what to do in case of an emergency. Elrod says anyone can learn this material.

“You don’t have to be a nurse, you don’t have to be a doctor, you don’t have to be a police officer or a firefighter,” said Elrod. “This is for your regular citizen.”

After completing most of the course, the team's members are ready to put their skills to test.

“Some of the things they're going to demonstrate is minor first aid, CPR, how to use a tourniquet," Elrod said. "You may have a patient that’s bleeding out. They’re going to demonstrate the fire suppression.”

The skills test, which takes place Saturday, is the final step before becoming certified to help when there’s a disaster.

The first graduating Emergency Response Team will be ready to respond to all types of situations, from traffic control to a hurricane.

Response team member Ruben Zuniga said he is confident in the skills he has learned.

“That my household and my immediate community is safe," he said. "That way I can go out and help the rest of the community."

To sign for the next free session, email or call (361) 758-5224. You'll be asked to sign up and fill out an application.