CERT course helps Villa Park police, community respond to major events
VILLA PARK — When last year’s rough summer storm hit the DuPage County suburbs, bringing with it high winds, heavy rain, fallen branches and thousands of power outages, the Villa Park Police Department activated its Community Emergency Response Team to help answer emergency calls and take some of the strain off officers.
The police department is the first place people call after major storms, and it’s easy for officers to quickly get inundated with calls from residents, said Villa Park Police Det. Bill Lyons. So, they’ve started relying on the help of trained community members to assist during emergencies.
“We’ve used them in storms,” Lyons said of the department’s Community Emergency Response Team program. “If we feel we’re getting overwhelmed, that’s when we’d activate.”
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