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Upcoming, FREE Emergency Preparedness Training, learn how to be prepared for any emergency! 

Hamden CERT is now accepting applications for this 8-week course that will be conducted once a week, on Thursdays, starting at 6:30 p.m. At the Dunbar Hill Fire Station. 

This training will provide you all of the skills and tools needed to be ready for any emergency at home, school or at your workplace.  At the completion of your course, you will be more familiar with our local police and fire department operations and have gained your: Nationally Recognized, FEMA CERT Program Certification, that you can be proud of! Also, after completing your training, you may consider being part of the Hamden CERT Program and become a team member. If so, you can choose when, where and how you desire to serve at emergencies, shelters, distribution points, major weather events or any of our many planned community events.

We have something for everyone of any age, who may like to step-up, to help our community!

Applications will be available here, (See Below!) on our website at: and must be completed, signed and returned to the Office of the Fire Chief, 2372 Whitney Avenue, Hamden, CT. 06518 no later than Thursday, August 31st. For any additional information, feel free to contact us here, through our website or email at: or check us out on our Twitter, Instagram or Facebook Pages!

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Hamden CERT, (As a Team)
What Are We All About?

As a member of Hamden Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), you can respond to disasters, participate in drills and exercises, and take additional training. CERTs are known and trusted resources to emergency responders and their communities. Under the direction of local emergency responders, CERTs help provide critical support by giving immediate assistance to victims, providing temporary relocations, damage assessment information, and organizing other volunteers at a disaster site. Volunteers trained in CERT also offer a potential workforce for performing duties such as shelter support, points of distribution, crowd management and evacuations. The role of a CERT Volunteer is to help others until professional emergency personnel arrive or to keep our 1st Responders free to handle higher priority emergencies.


In addition to supporting emergency responders during a disaster, the CERT Program builds strong working relationships between emergency responders and the people they serve. CERTs also help the community year-round by helping with community events, neighborhood exercises, preparedness outreach and fire safety education.


CERTs are not intended to replace a community's response capability, but rather, to serve as an important supplement to it. CERT Members are taught to keep their own safety in mind as their first priority. CERT Volunteers know their capabilities and the limitations of their training and equipment and work within those limitations. Team members are considered "Good Samaritans" and are covered under CT. State Statute, Title 28.  When deployed appropriately, however, CERTs can complement and enhance first-response capability in neighborhoods and their workplaces by ensuring the safety of themselves and their families working outward to their neighborhood or office and beyond until first responders arrive. CERTs can then assist first-response personnel as directed. CERT is a training program that prepares you to help yourself, your family, and your neighbors in the event of a disaster. During any major incident, emergency service personnel (911) may not be able to reach everyone right away. By getting trained in CERT, you will have the skills to help emergency responders save lives and protect property. By taking the free class, you will qualify to join our Hamden Team with your FEMA Certification, but you can also just take the training for your own personal protection.


If the information above appeals to you and you have a desire to protect your loved ones and give back to your community, the CERT Program is for you! If this sounds like a fit for you, please reply to this message or you can reply through our website at You can also review some of our ongoing service and activations on our website, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram sites.


Come join us and be part of a Great Team of dedicated individuals who care for each other, our neighbors and our community! We hope to meet you soon at one of the many community events or at our next basic class that will be starting soon!

Friday, May 5th & Saturday, May 6th, 2023 
Back to Back Multiple Alarm Structure Fires keep Hamden CERT  Busy for over 8 Hours!  

A very busy night for Hamden Fire & the Hamden CERT Crew with a 5 Alarm, Mutual Aid Request for a 3 Story, Vacant Commercial Structure Fire late Friday evening in Meriden and a 2 Alarm, 4 Story, Multi-Family Apartment Complex Fire at about 4:30 am Saturday  in Hamden.

Hamden CERT responded to 169 Platt Street in Meriden at 20:22 hours for firefighter rehab and Hamden Engine 5 responded for station coverage. Early Saturday morning, at 04:26 hours, all on-duty Hamden Firefighters, along with Mutual Aid on the 2nd Alarm from North Haven Fire joined forces at Hamden Town Walk for this well involved, 4 story, wood frame, multi-family, residential structure.


Luckily, there were no injuries but 30 residents, 5 children and many pets were displaced at the Hamden Incident. Hamden CERT provided firefighter rehab at both incidents and helped Hamden Community Services, Hamden PD, AMR & American Red Cross with the many displaced Hamden residents.


Displaced residents were assisted by Hamden CERT Members with blankets, warm beverages and temporary shelter in their CERT Vehicle and later led some to the community center at Town Walk. Many of these displaced residents ran to safety in the parking lot in night clothes, no footwear and without keys to their vehicles! Mutual Aid from New Haven, North Haven and Cheshire  supplied coverage for all Hamden Fire Stations during this major incident. The cause of both fires are still under the investigation of both local and state fire marshal's offices. 

"Thank you again to all Hamden & North Haven Firefighters for their outstanding efforts for rescue and minimizing the damage from this large, well involved fire from spreading further!"  

                169 Pratt Street, Meriden - Large, Vacant 3 Story Commercial Structure 

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 37300 Town Walk Drive, Hamden - 4 Story, Wood Frame Multi-Family Apartment Building  

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Tuesday, April 11, 2023
Congratulations to the 1st Graduating Class of the Quinnipiac University Campus CERT Program!
(QU, Also know as the home of the National, Division I Men's Hockey Champions!) 
Students get trained by Hamden Community Emergency Response Team!

Students recently took part in a training class run by Hamden Community Emergency Response Team for proper fire extinguishing in the Harwood Lot on the Mount Carmel Campus.

The training is a direct result of a $4,000 university grant to establish an on-campus chapter of the Community Emergency Response Team. CERT is a federal program coordinated through FEMA. The university's on-campus chapter works in conjunction with Quinnipiac Public Safety, Hamden CERT and the Connecticut State Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

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Congratulation to the QU Students from our first Quinnipiac University Campus CERT Basic Training Class, on their achievement and graduation! Thank you to these 11 students who took the time from their busy schedules to attend evening classes over the last 7 weeks!

A special thanks goes out to Quinnipiac Dr. Tom Ellett, Chief Experience Officer, Quinnipiac Professor/Hamden CERT Member Jen Sacco who acted as our Team Liaison, Quinnipiac Administrative Lieutenant Don Distefano, Quinnipiac Public Safety Members along with our Hamden CERT Instructors: Dave Lewis and Deb DiLeone.

Thank you also to Hamden Mayor Lauren Garrett and her staff for stopping by on Tuesday evening to support the students, during one of their last training drills!

We feel that with the dedication witnessed and wide field of training received by this group of students, this will be a legitimate resource for the university! Having FEMA Certified, Trained Students on the Quinnipiac Campus to recognize any precarious condition or situation they are trained to act and to notify the QU Public Safety Office or activate the 911 Notification System! Thank you again to Quinnipiac for providing the classroom, AV equipment and their support of this most beneficial program. We hope to see this program grow and look forward to another class soon.

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February 3rd & 4th 2023
Hamden & North Haven CERT Members come together for a 2-day, 8 Hour Certification Class for Mental Health First Aid Responders!
(See more details on our "History & Training Page!" 
Tuesday, June 28, 2022
State of CT Announces Funding For The New Hamden Fire Department, Station #2

It's Great Day for the Hamden Fire Department along with our residents of the southern part of Hamden. Hamden CERT has called this station our home for our CERT vehicle, supplies & equipment for the last 5 years! We thank Chief Merwede, A/C Naples, the staff & especially the line personnel who have welcomed us & shared their home away for home with open arms! We truly appreciate all the members of HFD for their outstanding service to our community! Thank you for sharing your station with us!

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Monday, May 30th 2022
Hamden Memorial Day Parade
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Thank you to our dedicated Hamden CERT Volunteers, who came out on their day off to support our town parade and pay tribute to our U.S. Military Personnel, who died while serving in the United States armed forces.


After getting the marchers and units in position at the high school for the start of the parade, our members headed over to the middle school to help with the conclusion of the parade. Then, most importantly, we took the time to attend our towns Memorial Service to our military members who gave the ultimate sacrifice, to secure our safety and freedom. God Bless America, our veterans and their families for their sacrifice.

"Never Forget!

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February 14, 2022 
Hamden CERT Responds to a 3 Alarm, Multiple Family Dwelling Structure Fire that displaces over 90 Residents
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On Tuesday, March 30, 2021 at the
Miller Library/Thornton Wilder Hall
Hamden CERT assisted Quinnipiac Valley Health District with the second of two
COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics. 

Thank you to our 16 Hamden CERT Members who came out to support the 2nd QVHD COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic at the Thornton Wilder Hall. Hamden CERT Members managed many of the Logistical Support Functions like: Medical Screening, Registration and Transport Support for special needs patrons who needed assistance to and from their vehicles. Again, it was an honor to work along with Hamden Fire, the QVHD Team, Quinnipiac University Students, Miller Library and Hamden Senior Center Staff. Special “Thanks” goes out to our members who took a day off from work, to assist our community during this ongoing COVID-19 Emergency.

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On Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at the
Miller Library/Thornton Wilder Hall
Hamden CERT assisted Quinnipiac Valley Health District & The Hamden Fire Department with the first of two
COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics. 

To Our Hamden CERT Members: 

We understand that we are a Volunteer Service and enjoy serving our community, but a "Special Thank You" goes out to our 12 Members who put in a very long day today at the COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic. Everyone of the 243 people who were vaccinated today were greeted, screened, registered and guided by our team members during their visit today! Your friendly, professional and caring service did not go unnoticed!

"Thank you so much for your efforts today;

you make us the Great Team that we are!"

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Saturday, December 12, 2020
Hamden CERT helps out with the final day of the 2020 Holiday Season Toy & Food Drive with Hamden Community Services, Hamden Police & Volunteer Firefighters !

On a raw & rainy Saturday, Hamden CERT along with Hamden Community Services, Hamden Police and Hamden Volunteer Firefighters were delighted to handle the "Deluge" of Toys, Games, Bikes and Food Items that were dropped off by so many Good-hearted Citizens! We thank all of you who went out of your way today to stop by and make a donation that will mean so much for our neighbors and their children who are in need during this Holiday Season.


"BTW, Santa wanted to send a Special Thanks to Chris & Donny for all of their hard work & efforts that make this great event happen!"

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Hamden CERT steps up to help during the 
COVID-19 Pandemic with Food Distributions for over 2,700 families since March 2020!
"With the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic Emergency, our primary mission will now be to support the Food Distribution Events and help with deliveries of food items to residents who are not able to leave their homes!"  
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Hamden CERT prepared, Ready & Equipped to assist Emergency Management with the COVID-19 National Emergency 
July 2020

As summer has now arrived and we hope for less social distancing and restrictions, we would just like to share with you what Hamden CERT has been accomplishing over the last 3 months, during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Since the FEMA sponsored, Community Emergency Response Team Program (CERT) is all about helping our community, as our purpose, we have been very busy.

Just to review, the CERT Program is a 3-Fold Program with specific goals. First, members make sure to protect and secure themselves and their family during any emergency. Second, when able to, members reach out to their neighbors to support any needs.  Third, when safe and available, members reach out and connect with other team members to supply any assets or support to their community as part of the trained and certified team. With the lack of community events that we are accustom to over the past years like Fireworks, Concerts, Food Truck Festivals and other major events, many of our members were concerned about what other activities we could support. In reviewing the first half of year (2019) compared to what we have done over the last 23 weeks, it was very surprising to see what has transpired!

Last year Hamden CERT Members contributed over 600 service hours from January to August, supporting community events. This year starting with the pandemic impact starting around the middle of March, our volunteers have provided much needed support to many of the vital services required by our community members. I would like to share with you what the dedicated volunteers of Hamden CERT have accomplished over the last 15 weeks.

Food Distribution – 10 total events, packaging & distribution – 720 Hours, serving over 2,400 meals to needy families. (Averaging 200 to 300 cars per event)

Points of Distribution for PPE – 11 POD’s totaling – 137 Hours, distributing hundreds of face masks and digital thermometers to area small business owners.

Food Deliveries, Assisting Hamden Elderly Services – 11 Deliveries – 98 Hours – making weekly deliveries every Tuesday to homebound elderly residents throughout Hamden.

The mission statement of Hamden CERT is all about people helping people and as you can see, we take pride for the fact that we work alongside our First Responders and are also an exclusive part of Hamden Emergency Management.


(See Our Mission Statement below.)

Mission Statement – Hamden, Ct. CERT



The mission of the Hamden Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) is to assist our families, neighbors and community, along with our local Police & Fire Departments when needed. Our team is FEMA Certified, trained and available to provide logistical support for any large-scale emergency or planned community event that would deplete the on-duty first responder personnel.


Hamden CERT is also the volunteer branch of Hamden OEM (Office of Emergency Management). Members are always available to assist all operations of Hamden’s EOC (Emergency Operations Center) and trained to manage any Mass Care Sheltering Operations, Points of Distribution for food, water or medications or any other logistical needs!


Hamden CERT Members were also able to support the Grace & St. Peters Episcopal Church: “Dinner for a Dollar” in collecting $570 from our CERT Members to support and serve 2 Dinners, serving close to 200 community members! During this time, we were also able to assist our Hamden Fire Department Personnel, with logistical support and rehabilitation services during the 3 weeks of Live Burn Training that was held during the month of May, totaling 150 hours. As we head into the month of July, we are now preparing and planning for the “Drive-by Hamden High School Graduation” where we will be assisting with the logistics of directing and parking  over 400 vehicles that will drive by the portable stage at Hamden Town Center Park and allow the graduates to receive their diploma’s.


“I’m sure that I speak for all of our members when I say: thank you to Mayor Leng, Chief Merwede, Fire Department Staff and Personnel for allowing our members to participate and be part of the team that provides so many vital services to our community on a daily basis.” It is always an honor to serve alongside of our First Responders, especially during this national emergency and trying times over the last few months.

“Please remember to be safe and do your part, for all of us during this difficult time. We are all in this together!”   


Respectfully submitted,

R.J. Freeman Jr.

Hamden CERT

Thank you to Porto's Tire of Hamden for their generous donation to Hamden CERT! 

Thank you to Porto's Tire Service of Hamden, CT. for their generous donation of 4 Chrome Wheel Covers for our Hamden CERT Emergency Response Vehicle! A Special "Thank You" goes out to Hamden CERT Member Marc Goldberg for making this happen! We truly appreciate your recognition of our service to the Hamden community and are proud to have you as a member of our team! 


Hamden CERT assist Samaritan's Purse with Disaster Relief after the Tornado of 2018! 

Hamden CERT Members had the opportunity to assist the volunteers from “Samaritan’s Purse Relief Organization” in assisting homeowners recover from the damage caused by the tornado and storms of May 15th.  Multiple teams headed out to Hamden, North Haven and Wallingford in assisting homeowners with the cutting of hazardous trees, limbs, branches and removal of storm debris.

Appreciative and amazed are two of the comments that we heard over and over durning our many days of deployments. Thankful beyond words and happy tears were not uncommon with the people we served. Rewarding and fulfilling were the feelings that we experienced in helping these folks and assisting them with their long road to recovery. The damage to our community is extensive and working alongside these outstanding volunteers from all over the country was a blessing that goes beyond words. A Special Thank you to Pastor Jim Detweiler of Hope Church, North Haven for the use of their facilities and to Chick-Fil-A, North Haven for supplying us with a great meal on Saturday, June 23rd for the workers and the folks that we served, during that day.

"A Special Thank You goes out to our Hamden CERT Members" who volunteered over 100 service hours assisting the members of Samaritan's Purse.  It was an honor and privilege to be part of the team from “Samaritan’s Purse” who have helped folks from all over the area. Again, thank you to all the members of “Samaritan’s Purse” for the blessings that you provided for so many of our neighbors, in their time of need! We will always remember you for your fine example of people helping people! 


"Thank you to Our Friends from the Hamden Rotary Club! 
"We thank you again, for our 2022 Grant Award!" 
"Service above Self!"


The members of the Hamden Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)  would like to thank the Officers, Directors and Members of the Hamden Rotary Club for their ongoing support of our program. We are honored to work alongside of the Rotary Members for the common, civic goals of making our community a better, healthier and safer place for all of us! 

"We are privileged to have the opportunity to work along side of our Hamden Rotary for the betterment of our community!"


Thank you Dunbar Hill Station #8 Members!

We would like to take the time to send a special thanks to the members of the

Dunbar Hill Fire Company #8 for their hospitality and opening their meeting hall to our Hamden CERT Members for our monthly meetings and trainings. Their generous proposal allows us to hold our basic training classes there also.

"Their generosity allows us to have a place to hold all of our activities and also have a place to call home!"


The funds raised by the rental of their hall are used for the upkeep & improvements of their station and equipment. If you know of anyone who is interested in the rental of the hall, please contact them through the information provided below. "We sincerely thank the membership of Dunbar Hill Station #8 Volunteers for reaching out to us and proving again the affiliation and teamwork of Volunteer Emergency Services helping our community to be a better and safer place for all of us!"


          EMERGENCY         OPERATIONS

The primary mission of Hamden CERT is to assist the community after major disasters  when  first responders, who normally provide fire and medical services, will be unable to meet the increased demand for their services. 


Factors such as increased number of casualties, communication failures, road blockages, and damaged infrastructure will prevent people from accessing emergency services they have come to expect at a moment's notice through dialing 911. Our residents and visitors will have to rely on each other for help in order to meet their immediate life- saving and life-sustaining needs. This is when and where CERT volunteers would step up and provide our community with the emergency care and skills needed to help them stay safe until additional services can be provided.

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Our goal is to educate our residents and make all of our citizens aware of the need to be prepared and to assist our neighbors and first responders when needed.


As a volunteer community organization, we constantly reach out to the public. We have assisted our town and its residents at many annual community events, including;  Hamden Town Road Race, Hamden Expo, Earth Day, Summer Concert Series, Food Truck Festivals and the Annual Fireworks Celebration.


We are proud to be the recipients of the Hamden Chamber of Commerce's 2012 Award for Service Organization of the Year!


Hamden CERT Upcoming Events

Also, please be advised because of the impact from the COVID-19 Pandemic on our totally volunteer membership, the availability of our members has been decreased and we may not be able to staff as many events as we have in the past. Be assured, that we will make every effort possible to support all request for our services relating to any large, town sponsored event.  





Thursday, September 7th, Start of CERT Basic Training Program, Dunbar Hill Station, 6:30 pm.

9/7 - 9/10, Thursday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday, Helping out North Haven CERT with N. H. Fair. 

Tuesday, September 12th, Start of Quinnipiac Campus CERT Training, QU Campus, 6:30 pm. 

Monday, September 18th, CERT Monthly Meeting/Training, Dunbar Hill Station, 7:00 pm. 

Saturday, September 23rd, Brooksvale Fall Festival, Brooksvale Park, 11:00 am. 


Note: Listed times are the start of the venue; Hamden CERT Members will arrive earlier!" 


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