The 20 courageous firefighters who heeded the call to assist in the blaze that engulfed the Bank of Lisbon building in Johannesburg recently were honoured for their bravery by Ekurhuleni’s executive mayor Clr Mzwandile Masina.
The medal ceremony took place at the Banquet Hall at the Germiston Civic Centre on Tuesday.
Speaking to the brave men and women who risked their lives to save others, the mayor applauded the courageousness displayed by the firefighters in responding without hesitation to assist firefighters in the City of Johannesburg.
“We called on you as firefighters to assist us as government in a situation that was almost getting out of hand and you responded positively to the call to serve the country and in addition serving the City Ekurhuleni, where you are employed,” Masina said.
The mayor added that the metro has shown its capability through its dedicated staff and its equipment which was used during the blaze which shows that it is geared to avert human tragedies in the future.
The team of firefighters responded to the request by the City of Johannesburg with a water tanker that was dispatched from Alberton Fire Station with two crew members who were deployed there the entire night.
More resources were later requested on September 6 and the metro responded to the call by sending with 20 qualified personnel members consisting of crew commanders and managers and 11 firefighters.
Firefighting units such a water tanker, grass unit, ambassador trailer and hydraulic platform were deployed.
Of the firefighting units deployed, the hydraulic platform vehicle became the most important fire fighting vehicle as it extended to heights that other equipment could not reach.
The vehicle was used to pump water into the building through the seventh floor for the entire operation after its arrival.
It was the main water supplier into the structure until the fire was extinguished.
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