“To educate residents to be better prepared to take care of themselves, friends, neighbors, and other residents in the event of a disaster until emergency responders can arrive.”
Panorama is the only retirement community in the United States with a disaster assistance team like DART. Each of DART’s 120 members undergo training that is standardized by the federal government. The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training is a 3 day training course that includes information on emergency preparedness, emergency medical assistance, fire safety, and search and rescue. The end of the course involves a disaster simulation in which members test their knowledge and skills.
Although DART members are trained in all disaster events defined by the Thurston County Emergency Management, their primary task in the event of a disaster would be triage and treatment of injured residents immediately following an incident. In the event of emergencies on a smaller scale, Panorama management may call upon DART for additional assistance. More specifically, DART takes on the role of Storm Assistance in some cases. During severe storm conditions, members will assist employees in answering phones, informing residents (by way of phone calls or communication runners), hosting campus “warming areas”, assistance in the restaurant (when low on staff), and home visits to residents when necessary.
The DART team has members with additional qualifications and training such as doctors, psychologists, and those who have personally experienced disasters and evacuation scenarios (one member spent 3 days on an interstate overpass waiting for rescue during hurricane Katrina).
No one wants to consider the possibility of experiencing a disaster situation but it is imparative to be prepared. At Panorama, we are very fortunate to have 120 qualified volunteers ready to assist fellow residents and support staff members, should we find our community affected.