Strandfontein ‘superwoman’ is SA’s toughest female firefighter
CAPE Town’s “superwoman” firefighter, Baigum Abrahams, 24, who hails from Strandfontein, is the reigning South African firefighting champion after winning the Toughest Firefighter 2018 competition.
Abrahams took part in the competition on Friday and Saturday, and showed off some of her skills.
Abrahams, who graduated from Epping Fire and Rescue Training Academy a month ago, received the best overall student award.
She admitted that her inspiration grew after she nearly burnt down her home when she was younger.
“I am happy to win this competition and proud to say the trophy and the medals belong to the City of Cape Town and the people of Strandfontein, who raised me,” said Abrahams.
She won a trophy as the toughest female firefighter, two gold medals for relay and a certificate as a “superwoman”.
The competition includes tasks relating to firefighters’ jobs, such as the series of obstacles, being the fastest firefighter, running up a 20-storey building in full firefighting gear, and being able to operate a fire engine’s complex machinery correctly when a house is in flames.
Abrahams’ mother, Jasmino Rawood, said she was certain her daughter would win the competition and she always knew she would do it.
“Baigum is a very happy and proactive child and she loves helping people,” said Rawood. Twelve municipalities from provinces across the country send firefighters to the competition.
Organiser Ryan Abrahams said the contest was a combination of competition, sporting event and a show of skills.
Firefighters demonstrated their strengths, co-ordination and the physical fitness they need for their demanding, everyday work.
City of Cape Town safety and security chief JP Smith said Cape Town was extremely proud of its firefighters who participated in this year’s challenge.
“We are proud of all the competitors, but especially of our City of Cape Town participants, who really shone.
“The performance of our female firefighters is especially noteworthy, given that we are celebrating Women’s Month,” said Smith.
The competition takes place across the world and allows entrants from different firefighting fields to enter.
The competition includes structural firefighters, bush firefighters and volunteer firefighters, as well as aviation firefighting services.
GLORY: Baigum Abrahams has won the Toughest Firefighter competition.