Neighborhood CERT graduates have acquired an Amateur Radio license and purchased handheld radios. Training and exercise programs presented by the volunteer CERT Radio program emphasize sustainability, self-reliance, and, through use of an international standard protocol, cooperation in a large group. Radio networking among neighbors who live in and are familiar with the affected areas are thus able to maintain effective, redundant voice communications in a disaster in the absence of utility power and/or loss of telephone or cellular service.
Familiar use of email and texting is sustained, even with loss of local carrier service through the volunteer CERT Digital local high-speed local radio network. Ad-hoc wireless extensions can be set up as needed to extend a larger radio backbone. As an example, regular smartphones can used by a Medical Reserve Volunteer group in a temporary triage or field hospital to establish redundant, secure communications to an operations center and/or hospital and clinic facilities.