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“Not all heroes wear capes”, NMBM commemorates International Firefighters’ Day

Published: May 03, 2024

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As the world commemorates the annual International Firefighters’ Day on 4 May, the

Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality honoured and celebrated the Metro’s firefighters on Friday as they continue to serve communities with pride and save lives.


During the commemoration event at the South End Fire Station, NMBM Executive

Mayor, Cllr Gary van Niekerk, commended the heroic work of the officials, junior and senior, saying the Metro was blessed to have never recorded any fire related deaths

for its fire fighters.


"International Firefighters’ Day holds a special place in our hearts as we pay tribute to the heroic men and women who selflessly risk their lives to protect others and keep our communities safe. The origins of this day trace back to a tragic event in

1999, the devastating loss of five firefighters in a wildfire in Australia. In response to this tragedy, the need to recognise and appreciate the courage and dedication of firefighters globally became evident.”


"These men and women are first responders who often attend to the worst scenes imaginable. We are also immensely proud of the excellent international reputation our South African firefighters enjoy. We see our teams help with international disasters like the Canadian forest fires and the many other rescue missions we are called to serve. Today you demonstrated to us that your work goes beyond fighting fires, you reminded us that you respond to emergencies including car accidents where you rescue our residents using the jaws of life," the Executive Mayor said.


The Metro handed over a total of 222 certificates for long service to the women and men who have been serving NMB from 10 years to 40 years.


Station Commander for the Sidwell Fire Station, Achmat Ellie, received the 40 year service certificate.

"I joined the force in 1982 and I will be retiring later this year. It is truly a remarkable moment for me as I have watched this sector transform having joined the force during the apartheid years. We have come a long way and have remained committed in servicing our communities. People’s attitudes towards us has also changed in a positive way. Fire fighting is a very important service in our society, people in distress see us as beacon of hope when we arrive,” said Ellie.


NMBM urges communities to be fire safe especially with the winter season

approaching.


10 Life Safety Key Points in case of a fire:


PLAN your escape route now.

PRACTISE your escape route as a family.

You only have seconds –

DON’T STOP for valuables.

SHOUT to alert your family.

KEEP LOW if the house is full of smoke. Remember, the air is clearer and cooler

near the floor.

DON’T INVESTIGATE – keep doors closed.

If there’s no way out, get everyone into a SAFE ROOM.

Never jump straight out of a window.

Ends.

Issued by the NMBM Communications Office.


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