Byline: Kelebogile Masemola

19 June 2022

The inspection and maintenance of fire hydrants in Tshwane has received a boost, owing to a partnership between The City of Tshwane and the insurance company

The two parties said on 15 June 2022, they had come together to ensure the cleaning, number marking and testing water pressure of 3 500 of the 25 000 hydrants in the metro.

Faulty hydrants will be recorded for referral to the relevant department.

The Chief Executive, Nash Omar said this initiative was important for the insurance industry because often, when fires were reported, emergency authorities arrived at the scene only to find that the fire hydrants were not working or missing, or just did not have water.

“Over the years the insurance industry has suffered millions of rands in losses because of what was supposed to be a small fire,” said Omar.

At the launch of the partnership at the Central fire Station was Tshwane mayor Randall Williams and members of the various political parties in council.

The mayor pointed to the blaze that destroyed sections of South Africa’s parliament in January, the raging fires at Charlotte Maxeke Hospital in April 2021, and the fire that broke out at Steve Biko Academic Hospital in Pretoria late in May.

“The fire hydrant initiative is driven by the mounting concern of the fire risk in urban centres.

Lately, we have witnessed a lot of devastating fires demolishing public facilities, such as parliament, Charlotte Maxeke Hospital and the Steve Biko Academic Hospital.

Working together with the insurance company, 15 unemployed youths from Tshwane were selected and trained with the requisite technical skills to ensure the proper inspection of fire hydrants.

The insurance company has committed R1.3 million towards the training, stipends and travel allowance for the youths.

The City welcomes this investment in the talent of our young people,” Williams said.

He added that he is pleased that through this initiative, the municipality was able to empower a deserving group of young people.

“This diverse group of young people expressed excitement over this project, particularly with the skills and experience they are gaining,” he said.