SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - On October 24th and 25th, four members of the South Plainfield CERT/RACES organization took part in an AUXCOMM training course. Marvin Bronstein, Tim Halloran, Drew Moore and Larry Makoski attended the two day, 20 hour course which was taught by a two member team from the Office of Emergency Communications branch of the United States Department of Homeland Security. The course was made possible by the Middlesex County Department of Emergency Management and the NJ State Department of Emergency Management.
Topics included Auxcomm Roles and Responsibilities, Incident Radio Communications, Interoperable Communications, and Team Management and Accountability. The lessons were interspersed with practice planning sessions to draw up Incident Radio Communications Plans;
a. Provide alternate communications in cases where local services have failed
b. At emergency incidents/planned events/training exercises
c. Within the Emergency Management Structure (Emergency Operations Center (EOC's), etc.)
d. Supporting communications with other organizations (Red Cross, Salvation Army, etc.)
AUXCOMM has been a vital resource in many disasters including Hurricanes Katrina, Irene and Sandy along with other disasters such as wildfires. AUXCOMM volunteers are trained to take on communications and other tasks, thereby assisting and freeing Police, Fire and EMS Personnel as well as other Emergency Responders to accomplish vital tasks. AUXCOMM is included in the ''National Emergency Communications Plan" (NECP).