WOF MPU prepares for Winter Fire Season

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GK CRONJE

13 April 2021

These camps ensure the 24 WOF Mpumalanga teams are mentally and physically fit going into the season. Firefighters are physically and theoretically assessed, and when successful, receive Yellow Cards at the end of the camps.

Suzuki Ermelo (WEB) 22 September 2020.jp

The Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Working on Fire Programme continues to live by its objective of restoring dignity to the disadvantaged youth in marginalised communities. This was evident when Working on Fire Mpumalanga recently conducted a recruitment drive at various towns across the province, in preparations for the upcoming Winter Fire Season. Selections were conducted under strict COVID-19 protocols and regulations, with hopefuls put through the rigorous WOF fitness test of a 2.4 kilometre run, push-ups, pull-ups and sit-ups. A total of 45 new recruits were selected, giving previously unemployed youth entry into the employment sector.

The new recruits will undergo specialised veld and forest firefighting training through the Kishugu Training Academy, in Nelspruit. Upon completion, they report back to their respective bases to top up existing teams. This ensures Working on Fire teams are at full strength going into the fire season. The province also took the team drivers and Safety Health and Environment Representatives (SHE Reps) to refresher training workshops at the Kishugu Academy, where they polished up on their theoretical education to ensure best practices at their bases. The Working on Fire Yellow Card Training Assessment Camps is set to take place in April.

These camps ensure the 24 WOF Mpumalanga teams are mentally and physically fit going into the season. Firefighters are physically and theoretically assessed, and when successful, receive Yellow Cards at the end of the camps. All these preparations will ensure WOF Mpumalanga is ready and able to assist partners and stakeholders in WOF’s much-sought-after Integrated Fire Management Services, which includes but not limited to, fuel load reduction and fire suppression.