Carlsbad CERT is organized according the the NIMS / ICS structure. This is the same organizational structure used by fire and police on any major incident. All CERT team members receive the same training and are cross-trained to fill the various jobs required by each section within the ICS organization. Administratively, CERT members are assigned to their preferred section or to that section that best matches their skill set.
The CERT Program is managed by the city's emergency preparedness manager.
The ICS organization comprises five major functional areas: command, operations, planning, logistics, and administration.
The Coordination Section develops incident objectives, reviews the CERT incident response plan, ensures that every CERT member is working in a safe environment and provides information via the Incident Commander/EOC PIO to the public and media on CERT activities.
Specialized Coordination Section positions may be filled to assist the CERT Coordinator during an incident. These positions might include the Public Information Officer (PIO), Safety Officer (SO), and the Liaison Officer (LNO).
Administration Section is primarily responsible for ensuring proper daily documentation of personnel time and activity. The admin section also works closely with other sections to ensure proper documentation of resource usage. The administrative section plans for staffing future shifts and personnel rotations.
Planning is responsible for collecting, evaluating and disseminating information pertaining to the incident. This section maintains information on the current and forecasted situation, as well as the status of resources assigned to the incident. Planning prepares the CERT Incident Action Plan, develops incident maps and keeps other team members informed of the progress of the incident and response activities.
Operations is responsible for managing tasks and operations at the incident site until the arrival of professional first responders.
Logistics is responsible for all support requirements needed to facilitate effective and efficient incident management, including ordering resources from off-incident locations. It also coordinates facilities, transportation, supplies, equipment, fuel, food services, communications and information technology support.