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West Pierce Fire & Rescue Wins FEMA Award

The department - which serves Lakewood and University Place - was recognized for its CERT Program, which boasts 369 members.

(Editor's note: This comes from which is announcing that it just won the FEMA 2012 Community Preparedness Award for Volunteer Integration)

This award recognizes the innovative practices and achievements of individuals, Citizen Corps Councils, non-profit, faith based, and private sector organizations working throughout the nation to make our communities safer, stronger, and better prepared to manage any disaster or emergency event.

“It has been shown time and time again that after a disaster, the very first responders are our neighbors,” said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate. “The award recipients promote preparedness across America’s communities.”

The West Pierce Fire & Rescue CERT Program boasts 369 members who serve a population of more than 90,000 citizens. The program integrates members of the whole community, bringing together diverse populations including members of the military, first responders, teachers, clergy, social workers, those who speak English as a second language, business owners, and even marine biologists to learn more about their local risks and to prepare one another and their neighborhoods for any disaster or emergency event.

159 new members have been recruited since 2011, allowing volunteers to reach deeper into the community with preparedness topics such as earthquake readiness, emergency shelter, evacuation readiness and even medical triage.

West Pierce also received an honorable mention award for Outstanding Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Initiatives.  West Pierce Fire & Rescue is proud to receive these national awards.

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program is offered free of charge to citizens who live or work in Lakewood and University Place.  Contact cert@westpierce.org for more information.

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