NERT Continuing Education Training Opportunities

you graduated, now what...?

Congratulations! You are an Emergency Response Team member. What can you do?

NERT Volunteer position overview

 Volunteer Roles (Non-Emergency)

Volunteer Roles (Emergency)

Responder role overview
NERT Staging Area ICS overview

Medical Reserve Corps

MRC roles

Complete NERT Roles Document

NERT graduates: Sign Up for volunteer roles

NERT ID Expired?

NERT certification is good for two years from the date of your training. You can renew your NERT training/ID at any NERT training location. Attend the 5th session (covering NERT response) and the 6th and final hands on session that includes a review of the take home exam. If your certification has been expired for more than three years, this indicates that it has been 5 years since you were trained in NERT. You must take the full course to recertify. Go to the SCHEDULE to find a location. Click "Enroll" next to the class of your choice to sign up for a RECERT ticket for the class. If the class is full you may add your name to the waitlist. You should also sign up for a location with available RECERT spaces.

The ID machine was updated in 2007. If you have a white ID card, you will need to take a new photo during the class. Please indicate this in your email. If you don't see a class that fits your schedule, please check back. The schedule is updated whenever a new class is confirmed.

Additional Training for Graduates

 See Calendar for dates and times

NERT Communications Team (NCT)
Communications are a vital role of the NERT teams. They often involve Amateur (Ham) radio but successful communication is so much more. Do communications interest you? Do you want to be part of the formal communication team for the SFFD NERT program?
Starting in 2014, The formal NERT Communication Team (NCT) training will include all of the courses below (NCT 101-601). Complete the courses to be recognized as an official volunteer on the NERT Communications Team. Equivalent credit for certain courses may be awarded on a case by case basis. 

  • NCT Introduction, 101
    You got your amateur (ham) radio license, now what? Introductory class designed for both newly licensed operators and those planning to get licensed to learn the rules of HAM communication, equipment options, and an overview of emergency messaging at this one day training. No HAM license required. All NERT Grads Welcome! Any HAM operators wanting disaster communication instruction are welcome after lunch. 
    • General Information for new hams
    • Radio Bands, frequencies and equipment
    • Procedures and protocols
    • Transmitting and receiving messages
    • Repeaters and simplex use
    • NERT communicator responsibilities
    • Emergency messaging
    • Staging area protocols
  • NCT Emergency Messages, 201
    Improve your communications and messaging skills. Learn how to write a short, effective emergency message using scene size-up. A valuable skill for every NERT. Emergency messages include five key elements: Identify, Location, Condition, Action, and Needs—become familiar with I.L.C.A.N. Class open to all NERT Grads!
    No Ham license or radio required to attend.  
    • scene size-up
    • Location, Condition, Action, Needs and time format
  • NCT Buttons and Knobs, 301
    "Dials and buttons and squelch, oh my!" These workshops offer hands-on help for your radio with programming, changing frequencies, setting tones etc. J-pole? We'll cover that, mag-mounts and more. For HAM operators that have a license but need more experience. You must have completed NCT101 or have approval to take this class.
    • ICS message form and message log
    • Sending and receiving messages
    • Programming your radio
    • Using your radio
    • Antennas and connectors
    • SWR and Wave propagation
  •  NCT Communicating, 401
    Talk, talk, talk. Listen, listen, listen. Scribe (write), scribe, scribe. Practice sending and receiving radio messages. Improve your communications and messaging skills. A valuable skill for NERTs.
    Prerequisites: NCT 101-303. Ham license required. 
    • get over your fear of talking on the radio
    • participants will have a chance to both send and take message
  • NCT NET Control for NERT Staging, 501
    Learn Net Control procedures and avoid "cross-talk" in a Staging Area. A HAM Operator, acting as Net Control, regulates the flow of radio traffic coming from multiple NERT Field Teams into a Staging Area. This is a skill that must be learned and practiced. Join us for this new addition to the NERT Communications training. HAM License required.
    • Single communicator managing transmissions from multiple users
  • NCT Social Media, 601
    Social Media is a great tool for preparedness and is playing an increasing role in response. You will need a registered Twitter name prior to attending and you will need to bring your own device. Pre-requisite: NCT 201 
    • Introduction to social media: Etiquette/rules; Basics (hash tags and handles and retweets...); Acronyms for NERT and SFFD
    • NERT and twitter: Non-emergency and Emergency

Neighborhood Command Post Operations I
Classroom instruction that brings together all aspects of the NERT response from basic skills to Incident Command and puts them in a unified view of how to manage the disaster.  The all day class includes a review of the NERT Field Operations Guide.

  • SF Emergency Operations Planning
  • Incident Command in the Staging Area
  • NERT Command staff and Staging Area Operations
  • Setting up the staging area
  • Field Operations
  • Creating the Team Response Plan

Neighborhood Command Operations II
Prerequisite: Neighborhood Command Operations I
This class focuses on incident handling, information flow and operational planning. A major component is understanding and using NERT forms to gather information, plan response and take action safely.

Incident Command System (ICS)
This is the official management tool necessary to set up command and respond from the NERT Staging Area to the Battalion Station. The information taught in this class is the foundation for using this management tool in a NERT response. This class is offered on-line through the FEMA website: 

NERT Coordinator Leadership/Team Training
This is designed for new coordinators or NERT grads who are interested in taking a more active role in your neighborhood team. All teams are looking for Block Captains. Training includes:

  • Coordinator basics: expectations and rules
  • Starting/Organizing your team
  • Developing the team
  • Effective meetings
  • Outreach
  • Including challenged persons
  • Leading tabletop drills
  • Disaster operations/Communications


Citywide Drills
Citywide Drill - Spring
Neighborhood Drills - Fall

Firefighter Support drills ** (space limited)
Participation with program coordinators approval. This training requires good physical condition and strength.

Ham Communications/Staging Drill
In class 5 you learned the basics of the NERT response.  This drill is an opportunity to expand on the class and put the skills to test in this staging area drill. The drill focuses on practicing the ICS roles, incident management and the flow of communication in the staging area and out to the Battalion Stations.  Dress appropriately in your NERT response gear, safety shoes and plan for the weather.

**Contact [email protected] for more information.

Non-NERT Training


  • HAM Radio Operator Licensing Classes:

San Francisco Auxiliary Communications Service
(click on the 'Exams and Training' link)

Bay Area Educated Amateur Radio Society (BAEARS) Exams and training

San Francisco Amateur Radio Club (ARC) exams and training

The National Association for Amateur Radio
(select exam location by country, state or zip code)

  • C.P.R. Classes:

American Red Cross- Bay Area Chapter
(find 'services' to see their list of training)