Firefighter teams lock horns in challenge
It was all muscles and glory when 44 firefighters from across the Western Cape showcased their skills in a challenge last Saturday at the Garden Route Mall.
The day began with a heartfelt address and a "ringing of the bell" ceremony to pay tribute to the eight firefighters who lost their lives in the recent fire season. This is a 200-yearold tradition that is performed worldwide by the firefighting fraternity.
The 11 firefighting teams, including one women's team from Overberg, took part in challenges such as the "Hose Roll", the "Fireman’s Carry" and the "Tyre-flip". The teams represented the fire departments of Eden (two teams), Overstrand, Overberg (two teams), Stellenbosch, Mossel Bay, George, Drakenstein, Acsa George and Acsa Eden.
Demonstrations included an extrication from a vehicle accident, fire-fighting vehicles on display and a potjiekos competition with six teams taking part. In a surprise turn of events, all fire chiefs were asked to partake in a hose roll display, much to the delight of the crowd.
The winners of the team challenges were Eden District Municipality
(men's category) and Overberg District Municipality (women's category). The George Fire Department received the culinary honours in the potjiekos competition.
Eden Manager of Community Services Clive Africa welcomed this event, saying it does wonders for the morale of the firefighters who are still trying to come to terms with their experiences during the Knysna Fires in June last year. "They all received counselling, but what they've experienced was so horrific, it takes a long time. Events like these really help them to feel supported and acknowledged by others." Managing executive of Oakhurst Insurance, Peter Grindlay, said the contribution of firefighters are often overlooked. "This prompted Oakhurst to get involved," said Grindlay. "The work that our firefighters do is so important for our community, and I really believe they are worthy of the highest recognition." Oakhurst was a major sponsor of the day.
See more photos at www.georgeherald.com The winning team: Eden won with a time of 6 minutes and 28,5 seconds. From left are manager of Community Services Clive Africa, Fire Chief Freddie Thaver, Eden Mayor Memory Booysen, Emile Conrad and his son...
Benedict Theunissen of the Raging Bulls, Overberg’s team, shows his loyalty. ABOVE: Cyndie Volmink, a team member of Overberg’s Fireflies, gets some help from Toy August of Overberg’s men’s team to fasten a buckle.
George Fire Department won the potjiekos competition. From left are George Fire Chief Neels Barnard, André Nelson and Assistant Fire Chief of Overstrand, Angelo Aplon.