National Joint TERT Initiative

June 2013

Issue: 10

In This Issue of NJTI

What’s Happening in Your State


5 Minute TERT Training

Display Panels

Committee Members and Volunteers


NJTI Mission Statement


TERT Documents


Quick Links

Like us on Facebook




Comments or suggestions for future issues, please contact Alejandro Moreno at

Deadly Tornados Hit

Texas Cities


Donna Kirklen and I set off for Hood County about an hour after the May 15th tornado obliterated a community. Honestly, we did not know what to expect. Our hearts were heavy for the citizens and our fellow dispatchers ; we wanted to help any way we could. The hundreds of calls were non-stop and mental images came and went with each call. The news showed images of the rubble that were once homes, cars , schools – dispatchers hear the voices of fear, panic and total disbelief of the people as they searched for loved ones, pets and anything resembling their former lives.


We could not stay but a few hours and I came away thinking our  small part was like dipping water out of a well with a teaspoon- so much to be done. Hood County Dispatchers did an outstanding job as well as Hood County law enforcement and those from surrounding

counties. The response area wide was overwhelming. We were different agencies melded into one force, sharing a purpose. 


On our way home in the wee morning hours, our heads were spinning  with ideas for our own agency should a similar event occur in Erath County. I knew many people hugged loved ones a little tighter in the following days. I urge everyone to come to the aid of fellow dispatchers in times of crises. You will receive one hundred times more than you give.


I feel so blessed to have chosen Telecommunications as a career.


Jill Van Natta-Erath County, Texas



The night of the tornadoes still feels like a dream to me.We all knew hazardous weather was in the area but there is no way in determining when, or where, or how bad its going to be. Everything seemed to happen so fast! We activated the Storm Spotters, Code Red Alert System, and then the Tornado Sirens. There was a funnel

Rex C. Curry/AP

cloud coming out of the sky right outside of our office but we didn’t budge knowing we still had a job to do. The 911 lines lit up the entire screen and that when we knew it had hit. People were picked up and thrown from their homes, severe lacerations, amputations, people trapped in their flattened homes, and the list goes on and on. It was utter shock on both ends of the phone. I sent every unit possible to the disaster site where they set up a command post and triage. Hundreds of calls continued to come in. During all of the chaos other agencies were offering assistance and EMS crews came from everywhere. Out of nowhere Erath County and Benbrook dispatchers were in our office answering lines with us. Citizens jumped to help wherever they could without anyone asking. EVERYONE was offering to help within just minutes of the disaster. I’m so grateful there are so many good people in this world.



I still cannon believe all of this happened to our community. This is definitely a night I will never forget as long as I live. I am so thankful to work with such a great group of people. Everyone comes together and stays together until the end. I am proud of my community, proud of my job, and proud to be a Texas.


Samantha Peck-Hood County, Texas



I am proud to say I am a Hood county 911 Dispatcher and I was working on the night the tornado hit Granbury. Nothing prepares you for that call that comes in, my house is gone or 2 people just landed in my backyard. I work with a good crew and everyone did a good job. We learned so much form this experience.


I was amazed at the ems crews who showed up and called to help. People showed up to help could not have done it with out you.


Thank you to the Erath county  and City of Benbrook  dispatchers who came and helped us to answer calls we could not have done it with out you.


Deborah young- Hood County, Texas 



Everyday on my way to work I go through a routine that mentally prepares me for the day ahead. Noticing on May 15, 2013 that the sky was exceptionally calm and sunny I said to myself, “today is going to be a good day.”  Not knowing that in just a few short hours I was going to be eating my words.  


Non-emergency calls started just before 8pm with alarm after alarm after alarm. No big deal, nothing we haven’t dealt with before. And then the worst thing imaginable happened. The next call that I answered was, “My house has been hit by a tornado and my family and I are trapped in the bathroom!” What do you say to that? Obviously, “don’t move” is irrelevant at this point. Trying to think quickly and shift gears I asked her if she could see any light from outside. After she replied with a panicked “yes”, I was slightly relieved to know they were at least getting oxygen. That relief quickly dissipated knowing that I couldn’t stay on the line with her because there were numerous other people calling that needed help as well. With each additional 911 call the situations seemed to get worse. There were people seriously injured, more people trapped, gas leaks, fatalities, and other emergency calls not related to the tornado flooding the dispatch center. Being in an office with no windows and no comprehension of what is going on outside the one thing that kept coming to my mind was…how bad is it? This situation is just one of many that my dispatchers and I were faced with that night. A short time later our prayers were answered when dispatchers from Benbrook PD and Erath County came to our rescue. Having them here so that we could focus our attention souly to our radios was such a relief. Without question or regard for their own safety a multitude of other agencies came to our aide when we needed them the most. We can never thank everyone enough for what they did.


I still have a hard time comprehending what happened that night. So many emotions flood the dispatch center when a catastrophic event occurs. And when everything is so crazy and hectic you don’t have time to process everything until it’s over. I remember leaving the office that night in a daze still trying to wrap my head around everything that had happened. When your life is forever changed in some capacity due to a catastrophe your perspective on life is forever changed as well.


Katrina Davis-Hood County, Texas


Stay tuned for the details on the Oklahoma tornado in our next issue…   

TERT Accessories is no longer selling TERT Accessories. A new website will be replacing If you are interested in purchasing Clothing and accessories with TERT logos, please visit the website below. 






Newsletter Suggestions


If there are any suggestions for improving the NJTI newsletter please contact Mr. Moreno at If there is a specific  topic you would like to see incuded in the newsletter or certain type of information you would like to see covered more, please send him an email.


Our mission is to provide Individuals with the latest TERT related news. If you have an idea for helping us improve our mission, your ideas and suggestions are more than welcomed.

What’s Happening In Your State 

Status of TERT

15 Deployable, 24 In Progress, 11 Inactive

(enlarge Picture)



TERT news from every state 




Colorado TERT hosted 2 training classes instructed by Natalie Duran. TERT Team Leader in Chaffee County  on May 29, 2013 and TERT Basic in Denver on May 30, 2013.





“IL-TERT participated in a multi-county disaster drill on May 8th. 3 Team Leaders deployed with 7 TERT members and during the drill  they observed in PSAP’s and then joined up with Unified Command Posts to handle communications in the field. This was another great training exercise for IL-TERT.”












NV TERT is currently seeking grant funds and exploring other funding sources to bring TERT leader training to Nevada.  Additionally, we working on the NJTI Deployable Status Checklist and are in the early stages of creating a policy and procedure manual and a tracking database.  





TN-TERT Members presented a basic overview of ‘What TERT is about and how it can benefit your agency’ to over 400 Tennessee Terminal Agency Coordinators at their annual conference and their makeup sessions in April & May. The information was very well received with several follow up questions and requests for more information.  



Middle TN Regional Coordinator met with representatives from four different Rutherford County Agencies to assist them in building a team. Preparations are underway for TENA’s annual conference in September. TN-TERT will have a booth in the vendor hall and will possibly be offering classes on basic TERT and TERT Leader.  Please find us on Facebook…





Cindy Moorhead, DFW Airport DPS


Cindy volunteered to become a member of TERT several years ago, when the  program first began. When the call came to assist St. John the Baptist Parish in Louisiana, after Hurricane Isaac struck, Cindy didn’t think twice about being deployed. She gathered her supplies and stood by until the call came to actually respond. At the last minute, DFW Airport DPS was able to provide a van to transport the TERT team members. Since Cindy was the only DFW DPS employee deployed, and according to DFW DPS policy, she was the only one allowed to drive the van. She drove the team and the supplies over ten hours, in the dark, into the hurricane ravaged area, in order to deliver the TERT members and their supplies safely…Read more 


After taking the IS-144, TERT members in the state of Texas must report it to


Laura Litzerman at If you do not send her a copy of your certificate you will not be eligible to deploy. Along with your certificate please include verification of the prerequisites; located at under the training schedule; their agency, 24 hour phone contact #, both personal and work emails.


This cake was given to the Hood County Sheriffs office after the recent tornado went through and devastated the area. 





On May 16, members from WI-TERT participated as role players from our State’s SIMCOM 2013 exercise. The WI-TERT team members  filled the roles of Radio Operators, Runners and Assistant’s to the COML’s.


The purpose of the SIMCOM (State Interoperable Mobile Communications) exercise is to educate, coordinate and test Mobile Emergency Communications platform capabilities from federal, state, tribal and local jurisdictions.






TERT Basic Awareness

Date: June 5, 2013

Location: Lewis County, NY


TERT Team Leader

Date: June 6, 2013

Location: Lewis County, NY



5 Minute TERT Training   





The Requesting PSAP is responsible for initiating the request for activation and providing guidance and direction to the responding team members. It is strongly suggested that PSAP’s complete a PSAP Survey Form prior to the need for TERT. Having the PSAP Survey up-to-date and ready for disaster is a must for quick response. Providing current information will prepare the TERT Team responding to your agency. Quality control should be addressed yearly and particularly when new equipment in implemented. The PSAP Survey can be found in Appendix A of the Standard for Telecommunicator Emergency Response Taskforce (TERT) Deployment.


Below are the recommended minimum data sets for the PSAP Survey and their description.


PSAP Name: Public Safety Answering Point Name (Albuquerque Police Department, Wise County Sheriff’s Office, etc.).


Physical Address: Number and street name, not P.O. Box.


Primary Contact: Person who will serve as the point of contact for the agency.

Secondary Contact: Person who will serve as the second point of contact for the agency.


24×7 Contact Number: A 10 digit number that is answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.


CPE Manufacturer: The manufacturer of the communications or terminal equipment located in the PSAP for answering emergency and/or non-emergency calls for service (Intrado, Cascadian, etc.).


CPE Model: The model of the communications or terminal equipment located in the PSAP for answering emergency and/or non-emergency calls for service (Viper, Patriot, etc.)


Mapping Manufacturer: The manufacturer of the agency mapping platform (GeoComm, Microdata, etc.).


Mapping Model: The model of the agency mapping platform (normally has the same name as the manufacturer).


Radio System Manufacturer: The manufacturer of the radio system located in the PSAP (Motorola, Harris, etc.).


Radio System Description: Describe the type of radio system used by the agency (4 channel system, county interoperability, etc.)


Staffing: (Is your staff trained as)

Call Taker only:   A public safety call taker trained and/or certified in accordance with the AHJ policies in receiving, assessing, prioritizing and classifying calls for service (police and/or fire and/or EMS) and operating public safety and/or PSAP communications equipment.


Call Taker Police: A public safety call taker trained and/or certified in accordance with the AHJ policies in receiving, assessing, prioritizing and classifying calls for service (police) and operating public safety and/or PSAP communications equipment.


Call Taker Fire/EMS: A public safety call taker trained and/or certified in accordance with the AHJ policies in receiving, assessing, prioritizing and classifying calls for service (fire and EMS) and operating public safety and/or PSAP communications equipment.


Call Taker, Police and Fire/EMS: A public safety call taker trained and/or certified in accordance with the AHJ policies in receiving, assessing, prioritizing and classifying calls for service (police and/or fire and/or EMS) and operating public safety and/or PSAP communications equipment.


EMD Program: Participates and is certified in (APCO, Priority Dispatch, etc.) Emergency Medical Dispatch Program.


Display Panels


The items below are available for TERT related conferences. Shipping to your location will be free.The only cost to you will be the outgoing shipping you pay. For full explanation of procedures please refer to   Reserve TERT Accessories section above.


Display Panels Currently reserved for:





  Table top 

                       99″ w X 87.5″ h                            48″ w X 51.5″ h



TERT Panels at Conferences

TERT Panels in conferences 


“The displays worked great for the event. They attract the attention and then get people interested in the information about TERT.” – Brianna Fields





Thanks to Sherry Decker for sharing such an informative and attractive display.” – TN state coordinator



“At our  State APCO/NENA conference last week our class was full of those interested in TERT” – OK state coordinator

Committee Members and Volunteers


Standard Committee                     Training Committee

Lynnette Doyal                              Christine Burke

Brian Burgamy                               Lisa Fulton

Linda Davis                                    Linda Davis

Kimberely Burdick                          Jesse Creech

Cory James                                     Brianna Fields

D.Jeremy DeMar                             D.Jeremy DeMar

Violet Anderson                              Diane Pickering


Legislative Committee                    Newsletter

Brian Burgamy                                Lisa Fulton

Kimberely Burdick                           Alejandro Moreno


Conference and Booth                     Website

Lynnette Doyal                                Jim Tanner

Lisa Fulton                                       D.Jeremy DeMar

Cozett Davis                                    Brian Bergamy

Jim Tanner                                           


Members/Database Committee

Christine Burke

Jim Tanner

Yolanda Callaway

Brianna Fields

Lena Gribb

Michele Blais

Violet Anderson

Cozett Davis

North Central Texas Council of Governments | 616 Six Flags Drive | Centerpoint II | Regional 9-1-1 Program | Arlington | TX | 76011