Saturday, May 18, 2024

FIRST WITH SECURITY NEWS

City of Cape Town firefighting duo to take on ‘weight of work’ at Two Oceans

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City of Cape Town firefighters Jermaine Carelse and Renaldo Duncan will carry the “weight of work” on their shoulders when they participate in the Totalsports Two Oceans half marathon on 14 April.

The duo will be wearing their full firefighting gear, including their self-containing breathing apparatus (SCBA) which weighs 10kg.

This will be the third time the seasoned firefighters take on the race in their uniforms, and the second year that they are raising awareness and funds on behalf of the Volunteer Wildfire Service (VWS).

Last year, they raised R181000 for VWS.

Alderman JP Smith, the mayoral committee member for safety and security, expressed his gratitude to VWS and the pair.

“Jermaine and Renaldo have generated such goodwill and positivity with this initiative, and we are hoping for a similar outpouring of support this year. Cape Town has had one of the most extraordinary wildfire seasons in history, and it has pushed firefighting agencies to the limit. We would have been far worse off without the members of the Volunteer Wildfire Services, working side by side with career firefighters on the frontline, to protect lives and property.”

“The city is incredibly grateful to VWS, and we’re immensely proud of Jermaine and Renaldo for their efforts to drum up support for the organisation. I am confident that Capetonians will throw their weight behind our firefighters, and VWS,” he said.

VWS is a registered NGO that relies on public and corporate donations to cover its operating costs.

It costs at least R7 500 to train each volunteer firefighter, and equip them with basic Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

Volunteers are required to purchase their own backpacks, fire boots, water and nutrition that is needed while fighting fires.

VWS CEO Claire Lötter said the biggest expense at the moment was vehicles, with the oldest being a 28-year-old Land Rover.

“You’ll see our bright yellow vehicle running around the mountain during times of disaster, ferrying eight volunteers at a time. The cost of maintaining our ageing fleet is draining our resources and we are desperately trying to reduce this burden. All of us at VWS are deeply appreciative of Jermaine and Renaldo’s selfless act of running this marathon again on our behalf to raise much needed funds. We will be there, both at the starting line and the finish line, to cheer them on,” she said.

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