Beginning Thursday, April 4, the Whitehall Community Emergency Response Team will offer a nine-week course that will be open to Whitehall residents.

Beginning Thursday, April 4, the Whitehall Community Emergency Response Team will offer a nine-week course that will be open to Whitehall residents.

The program is designed to teach residents emergency preparedness in the event of a natural disaster. The Federal Emergency Management Agency developed the program, known as CERT in local participating communities, to train residents to care for themselves, their families and neighbors for the first 72 to 96 hours after a natural disaster. That's when first responders and services probably wouldn't be readily available.

Administered with the assistance of the Whitehall divisions of fire and police, participants will learn basic first aid, fire suppression and light search and rescue techniques and will hear information such on topics as terrorism and disaster psychology.

Classes will meet at 7 p.m. each Thursday beginning April 4 at the Whitehall Division of Fire, 390 S. Yearling Road.

Residents wanting more information or to register should call Kenny Robinson at 614-352-3234.

Registration is free. A grant from the Franklin County Emergency Management Agency funds the programming and materials for the course.

The class is limited to 20 individuals, who must be Whitehall residents.