The Richland Township Police Department is part of a multi-jurisdictional S.E.R.T. (Special Emergency Response Team) team that operates throughout Cambria County. Originally, the Richland Township Police partnered with the Johnstown Police Department in January 2001 to form one of the few certified, multi-jurisdictional SERT teams in Pennsylvania. The SERT team has responded to numerous emergency calls in the city of Johnstown and Richland Township as well as assisting other police agencies in the area.
The Johnstown/Richland SERT team played a vital role in securing the John Murtha/Cambria County Airport on 9/11 when flight 93 had entered the airspace over Johnstown.
In 2010, the SERT Team updated, to include, county-wide police agencies. Currently the SERT team is made up of three units; the entry team, the long rifle team and the hostage negotiators. The SERT team consists of highly trained officers that deal with armed and violent criminals in high risk warrant service and barricaded suspects. They also deal with incidents ranging from disturbed or suicidal subjects to hostage situations. The SERT team trains twice a month for all types of situations that they may encounter. They also cross train with other SERT/SWAT teams throughout western Pennsylvania. The SERT team has been actively involved with the protection of numerous dignitaries including the President, Vice-President of the United States, U.S. Attorney General and the head of the Drug Enforcement Administration to name a few. The SERT team also provided security details during the 2009 G20 Summit in Pittsburgh, PA.
They are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to respond to wherever they are needed.