Thousand Oaks CERT & DART

Thousand Oaks CERT Logo

Ventura Coutny Fire Department Logo

The next T.O. CERT class will be held in Spring 2016 and will be scheduled on five successive weekdays for two hours each night as opposed to three Saturdays.  The classes will be held at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza and one final drill on a Saturday at the Ventura County Fire Department Headquarters at the Camarillo Airport. Students must live in Ventura County and be at least 18 years to participate in the CERT Program. If you would like to be placed on the waiting list for this class, please send your full name, address, phone and email address to Once a date has been secured, you will be contacted.

About CERT
All classes are taught by trained emergency personnel, including firefighters and emergency medical services personnel, with expertise in disaster management. CERT is provided free of charge within Ventura County to anyone 18 years of age or older. To see photos of CERT graduates in action, click here. This series consists of three classes to complete the course. For countywide CERT information, please visit the Ventura County Fire Department website.

Do I have to be a Thousand Oaks resident to register for the CERT Program?
Although preference goes to Thousand Oaks residents, if you are a resident of Ventura County, you are qualified to attend classes for this program as well as in other communities. 

Where do I get information about the City's Disaster Assistance Response Program (DART) ?
The City's DART Program is managed by the Thousand Oaks Police Department and to become a member of DART, you must complete CERT. To learn more, please click here.

What if I can't make all the classes?
You can make up classes you miss in a later session or with another City.  For a calendar of classes in Ventura County click here or check out other City's links below.  Before contacting another program check which subjects you will be missing. 

Click on the links below for CERT training offered in neighboring cities:

What is CERT?
Local government prepares for everyday emergencies. However, during a large disaster, the number and scope of incidents can overwhelm conventional emergency services. The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program is designed to educate Thousand Oaks residents and businesses about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their area and instructs them in basic disaster response skills. Using the skills learned in the classroom and during exercises, CERT members can give critical support to their families, neighbors, and community immediately following a disaster when residents may initially be on their own and emergency services may not be available to help.

The training covers basic life saving skills that are important to know in a disaster situation and provides valuable support to the City, neighborhoods, and emergency response personnel. Click here for training highlights.

Why was the CERT Program developed?
The CERT training program was developed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and modeled after the original 1985 program used by the City of Los Angeles Fire Department. The purpose of the CERT program is to create a well-trained citizen emergency work force which is vital in the immediate aftermath of disaster situations when the number and scope of incidents overwhelm conventional emergency services.

Why do the CERT Training?
CERT members are primarily used in their own neighborhoods. CERT training means you are as ready as you can be to help yourself, your family, and your neighborhood, and serves as the basic level of training for all community-based disaster volunteer teams in Ventura County. In a disaster, normal activities will be disrupted, police, fire, 9-1-1, and ambulances will be quickly overwhelmed, and may not be able to respond for 72 hours. Residents need to be able to take care of themselves until the professional emergency responders arrive. One goal of the CERT program is to help residents respond to and assist others in need and do so effectively without placing themselves in unnecessary danger.

What type of training do CERT members receive?
Over the course of three weeks CERT members receive training in: