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Carrick block watchers urged to be prepared for any type of emergency by taking disaster class


Elaine Caparelli from the City's Bureau of Police, guest speaker at the April 2 meeting of the 29th Ward Carrick Block Watch, explained that a free Emergency Disaster Class will be offered at Quentin-Roosevelt School on April 23 from 7 to 9 p.m. Guidelines for the class have been established by the American Red Cross.

Caparelli is looking to have at least 30 people sign up for the April 23 class. It will cover basic ideas for household preparedness in the case of a major disaster. The class also offers tips on what to do for disasters that are large in scale, similar to what happened in the city during the tornadoes that struck in June, 1998.

A folder filled with emergency brochures and the various agencies to get in touch with, will be given to each person attending the class.

“This class is full of information, but it's not so much that you can't handle [absorbing] it,” Caparelli said. “This is something for you, your family and your neighbors.”

There is no limit on the number of people who can register.

“The more, the merrier,” Caparelli said. “If we have to, we'll come back if there is a need for another class. These emergency classes are going to be held all over the City.”

For those interested in a more advanced CPR class, that could be arranged at a later date through Caparelli's office. That class requires four hours of study. Caparelli's office telephone number is 412 244-4197.

After the basic emergency class is completed, residents who want more training, can also sign up for 14 hours of more advanced instruction through the Community Emergency Response Team.

“That is more of a physical, hands-on type of experience,” said Caparelli, noting anyone attending the more advanced training, tentatively set to begin in June, will learn things such as how to stop heavy bleeding, set a splint, treat a severe burn or how to handle traffic control in a disaster area.

Also at last week's meeting, Caparelli said volunteers are being sought by the city police for its mini-stations that will be re-opened for the summer. Residents are needed to answer phones and distribute information at various mini-stations in the City neighborhoods such as Arlington, Allentown and Carrick.

The mini stations will not be opened if there is not enough volunteer help to staff the various locations at Phillips Park, the Warrington Recreation Center and Fernleaf Street (Arlington).

29th Ward Block Watch organizer JoAnn Herman also reported at the meeting that street cleaning has started at many locations in Carrick.

Residents should take note of the new schedules which are posted on utility poles. Street cleaning will no longer be done once a week from April through November. The city has changed it to once every two weeks. Cars illegally parked on the street during posted street cleaning hours, will not be issued citations for the first two weeks of the program.

However, cars blocking the street cleaning routes after mid-April, will be subject to a parking ticket.


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