Join the Flotilla

Ready to Join?

We’re always looking for new members, whether they be vessel owners or experienced crew. If you live in and around Bainbridge Island or your vessel is moored here, we’d love to have you on our team.

Here’s how to join the Emergency Flotilla in four easy steps:

1. Tell us about yourself and your vessel by filling out this form. It will take 5 minutes. You don’t have a vessel but you’d like to help? Just tell us that on the form. 

Why start here? This is so we know who you are, where your boat is, and how to contact you. You’ll also begin to get our newsletter. Do this and we’re connected. Five minutes. really.

2. Apply to get your volunteer credential with the City of Bainbridge Island. The application is free. You’ll need to supply a recent photo and agree to a background check. Apply here

  • You can email the electronic form to
  • You can hand deliver it to the City receptionist in care of Anne LeSage, Emergency Management: 280 Madison Ave S. Bainbridge Island, WA 98110.
  • You can mail it to Anne at the above address.

This is a long form. Do read the commitment list carefully. Once you are registered, you get a credential, and that means whenever you volunteer with us, you’re covered by the City’s liability insurance, and you get reimbursed for your expenses as you volunteer. You also get a secure way to identify yourself as a flotilla member.

3. That application takes a little time and, as part of your certification, you’ll need to learn about FEMA’s Incident Command System, which is how we run our response to any incident. While you’re waiting for your application to be processed, take the following two courses online and get your course completion certificates to submit to the City’s Emergency Manager. Register for your FEMA Student ID here

4. Get your amateur radio operator’s license and a handheld radio transceiver. The Emergency Flotilla gets mobilized during major incidents. During these times, we expect that normal communications channels—Internet, mobile phones, and marine VHF—will be unavailable, crowded, or disrupted. Amateur radio has always served well in emergencies, and it is the choice communication tool for Emergency Operations on Bainbridge Island. If you’re a vessel captain, you’ll need your license or an Emergency Flotilla crew member with one onboard. To learn how to get your Technician’s license and handheld transceiver, contact the team leads at Bainbridge Island Emergency Auxiliary Radio Service.

Once you complete these four steps, you get a Bainbridge Prepares flag that you fly during an exercise or an incident. It identifies your boat as a safe place to use for travel.