PROVIDENCE—Citizen Emergency Response Team (CERT) training will now be offered to Providence residents, thanks to a unanimous vote at last week’s Cty Council meeting. The council also voted to purchase a new truck for the use of the water and sewer departments.Providence resident Paul Masuyama is a certified CERT trainer, and he suggested to Mayor Ron Liechty that the city send a few employees to training. The mayor described their conversation this way: “I told him, ‘I’ll do you one better. How about we put that money toward a training program right here in Providence and train the people here?’ He was just thrilled by that.”Liechty said that he thought this would be a better use of the city’s money, because they can train more people this way.”We live in an area where we know there is probably going to be an earthquake,” Masuyama said. “It’s not if, it’s when.”The CERT program trains people in basic breathing resuscitation but not CPR. They also teach basic first aid, fire and earthquake preparedness and recovery, among other emergency situation know-how. The same curriculum is used throughout the U.S., so people in Providence will get the same training as everyone else in the country.They aren’t sure when they will start CERT training, but said space is limited to 24 people. If you’re interested in becoming CERT certified contact the mayor or one of the city council members. The training will be three hours per class, one class per week for eight weeks.The cost is around $45 per student. It includes classes, the CERT manual, helmet and vest— everything needed for the course. The $45 doesn’t cover all the costs of the program, so the city is allocating $810 from the safety fund for CERT training. The council would like CERT students to be somewhat scattered throughout Providence so there are trained individuals in various parts of the city during the case of a major disaster. You can learn more about CERT by visiting their Web site at http://www.citizencorps.gov/cert.The council also approved the purchase of a new truck as proposed by Randy Eck, Providence public works director. The truck is a ¾-ton single axle Ford and will serve the water and sewer departments. Eck said that the only thing he doesn’t like about the truck is that it doesn’t have extra room behind the seat, but other than that it’s a great truck for the departments.The truck will cost $28,000. Part of that will be loaned from the sewer fund to the water fund. That loan will be repaid annually in two installments of $700.”We have the money,” Eck said. “We can afford this truck in the sewer department right now.”The truck currently being used by the water and sewer departments has been in the fleet since at least 1994, maybe longer, Eck said. It isn’t reliable, it has cost a lot of money to maintain over the past few years, has 96,000-97,000 miles on it, he said, and in order to get it into working shape the engine would have to be rebuilt, plus other mechanical alterations. Eck said that repairs would cost between $3,000 and $4,500.”It struggles to make it to the reservoir,” Eck said. “I’m ashamed to admit that, but it’s true.”The council granted the request. The new truck will be loaded on a transporter and driven from Salt Lake to Providence, brand new with zero mileage.
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