Emergency Preparedness

Get Ready, El Cerrito!

We cannot predict but we can prepare. Disasters Happen. Prepare Now. Learn How. In a disaster, you may be on your own. Your neighbors are learning what to do. Are you?

Prepare yourself and your family

Are you ready for the next major earthquake or wildfire? The first steps are as easy as 1, 2, 3.

1. Store water.

  • Store 12 days of water for each person & pet in your household.
  • 1 gallon of water per person/pet per day. Water storage containers available at local retailers.

2. Make a plan.

3. Build a kit.

Already have water, a plan and a kit?
Take the next steps. Learn how.

Be ready to help your neighbors

Join El Cerrito's Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)

Through CERT you will learn:

  • Disaster Preparedness
  • Damage Assessment
  • How to Turn Off Utilities
  • Disaster First Aid
  • Basic Firefighting
  • Light Search & Rescue
  • and more!
Register here.

For more information and to register for CERT classes, please contact Battalion Chief Joe Grupalo at 215-4450.

Local Threats 

See below for an assortment of (hopefully) compelling reasons to take action now.
Action to prepare for the “Big 3” disaster threats we now face in our community.

(Especially those living in the East Bay hillside communities)


Earthquake - Hayward Fault (11 min)

“Haywired” by USGS  (6 min)

Lawrence Livermore Lab (2 min)


El Cerrito/Kensington Wildfire (4 min)

Ready Set Go - Cal Fire (6 min)

Camp Fire/Cal Fire (17 min)

Evacuation (13 min)


PG&E - PSPS (Public Safety Power Shutdown) 1 min Video

CPUC Fire Threat Map

Preparing for Disaster
​Sign up on Contra costa county Community Warning System:


A reliable water supply is an important part of any preparedness program. Following a major earthquake, EBMUD says that they will get most residential customers back online within 30 days. You need to be ready to have drinking, cooking and sanitation water in the meantime. Municipal  governments  will  distribute  potable  water  supplies  within  several  days  but  that means standing in line with containers to get your rationed water. The most reliable way to assure adequate water is to store water at your home and office. Lamorinda CERT Foundation periodically purchases large quantities of FDA approved blue water  drums  and  associated  supplies  like  wrenches,  pumps,  spigots,  dust  covers,  etc.  By purchasing in bulk, the freight charges are reduced substantially.  What do you need? It is recommended that each person have one gallon for drinking and food preparation plus one gallon for sanitation (tooth brushing, hand washing, etc.) each day. That is  14  gallons  per  person  per  week.  If  you  have  a  swimming  pool,  that  can  serve  for  most sanitation needs. Once you figure out how many gallons you want, determine which drum size is best for you. The 5 gallon Samson Stackers are convenient and only weigh 42 pounds when full. The 15 gallon drums are more expensive per gallon than the 55s but can be moved (about 127 pounds). The 55 gallon drums are stationary once filled (about 485 pounds) but are the most economical for large volumes. 

Periodically, Lamorinda CERT Foundation purchases items to resell. We sell both water storage items and fire extinguishers. The water items include FDA Approved, food grade plastic water barrels with associated drum wrenches, spigots, pumps and other accessories. The fire extinguishers are USA made, commercial quality, rechargeable extinguishers. Residents must pre-order so that we can get to even pallet quantities. An email will be sent confirming your purchase. The advertised prices include all freight and sales tax. Sale closes at noon on Thursday, September 26th, 2019. The pickup will be October 4-5 .
We HIGHLY recommend purchasing water storage items as a Package as they contain everything needed for a single location including drum(s), wrench, dispensing method (spigot or pump), bleach, a bleach dosing syringe and instructions. To calculate how much water you need, multiply number of people * 2 gallons per day * number of days you want to have water to drink following a disaster. You can add additional drums of the same size for more capacity.
Before ordering, please CLICK HERE for a detailed explanation of what you will need and how to use the items. If you are still unsure, email us at: water@lamorindacert.org

We are an all-volunteer organization and schedule pickup dates in cooperation with the fire district and when we can get our crew together. 
All products must be picked up on the pickup dates below. If you cannot arrange for pickup on the announced dates, PLEASE DO NOT ORDER.

The Moraga-Orinda Fire District, and El Cerrito Fire Department have no responsibility for this program. It is strictly a program of Lamorinda CERT Foundation, a wholly volunteer 501(c)(3) charity. No fire district personnel have any answers to any questions and they cannot deliver product. All product must be picked up at the designated pickup times because these are the only times the volunteers will be available.

Pickups will be at the El Cerrito Corporate Yard, at the East end of Schmidt Ln on:

Friday, October 4th, 2019      5pm-8pm
Saturday, October 5th, 2019    9am-12pm

To place an Order please visit Lamorinda CERT Foundation Page: HERE
El Cerrito MUST be noted under CERT program upon checkout of the order to ensure pick up in El Cerrito.