Emergency Management

Community Emergency Response Training (CERT)

History of Program

The CERT concept dates back to 1985, when the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) recognized that in the early stages of a disaster - earthquakes in particular - local emergency responders would be overwhelmed, and basic training in disaster survival and rescue skills would improve the ability of community members to survive until responders or other assistance arrived.


Recognizing the universal value of this program, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) worked in conjunction with the LAFD to make the CERT program applicable to all types of hazards and developed a CERT training program which could be used nationwide and adapted to meet local conditions when the need arose.

The tragic events of September 11, 2001 remind us that disaster can strike anywhere or anytime, and that basic safety and disaster survival skills can mean the difference between life and death. CERT training empowers community members to prepare responsibly and respond appropriately when emergencies occur.

Branson's CERT Team

Branson’s CERT Team is comprised of dozens of local residents from various neighborhoods and large commercial business such as resort properties that have been trained in eight core areas including:

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  • Basic First Aid
  • CERT Organization
  • Disaster Preparedness
  • Disaster Psychology
  • Light Search and Rescue Techniques
  • National Incident Management System
  • Small – Fire Suppression
  • Terrorism Awareness

If you would like to learn more about serving on the Branson CERT team, contact us at 417-243-2780 or by email.

Storm Ready Community

The Program

The City of Branson has been designated a Storm Ready Community by the National Weather Service (NWS). Storm Ready is a nationwide program that helps communities better protect their citizens during severe weather such as thunderstorms, tornadoes, flash flooding, and winter weather.

The program encourages communities to take a proactive approach to improving local hazardous weather operations. Storm Ready provides emergency managers with clear-cut guidelines on how to improve their hazardous weather operations.

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To obtain this certification the City of Branson Emergency Management had to make advancements in the following areas.

Communications & Coordination Center

Branson established centers available to receive NWS information and provide local reports from the community. This is done through our Branson 911 emergency communications center and the city’s emergency operations center.

National Weather Service Warning Reception

The city established multiple or redundant mediums to receive NWS weather warnings. This included

  • Direct communication to the 911 emergency communications center
  • NOAA weather radios
  • Amateur radio
  • Text alerts
  • The emergency alert system with local media
  • Other commercial data services

Hydrometeorological Monitoring

All developing and approaching weather is monitored on radar and other hydrometeorological equipment.

Warning Dissemination

Weather warnings are disseminated through one or more means to ensure timely notification to the public. This includes NOAA weather radios, CodeRED weather warning, storm sirens, and media overrides.

Community Preparedness

Public education is vital in preparing citizens to respond properly to weather threats. An educated public is more likely to take steps to receive weather warnings, recognize potentially threatening weather situations, and act appropriately. The city conducts and facilitates safety messages regarding severe weather at all fire safety programs, utilizes the media, and hosts a NWS storm spotter training annually.

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