The advancements of technology within the Fire Protection Association (FPA) community in South Africa has come a long way since the days of ‘spotting’ a fire from a tower. The mobilisation of assets to suppress wildfires is an integral part of any FPA, and the effectiveness and efficiency thereof could be the difference between a few hectares, or a few thousand hectares, lost to fires. It is important that FPAs know (or at least have quick access to) the ins and outs of fire management processes.
With this in mind, the GEF FynbosFire Project determined that an all-encompassing resource should be developed to serve as an asset to FPAs across South Africa. The toolkit, developed by the project, is a reference and a step-by-step guide that can be fully customised to suit the needs of any FPA. It also contains the new handbook, A Guide to Integrated Fire Management, that addresses Integrated Fire Management (IFM) best practices, lessons learned, case studies, frequently asked questions and template documents, which can be adapted for the unique requirements of FPAs.
Although originally compiled for the South African landscape, with only a limited number of copies being issued, A Guide to Integrated Fire Management and the FPA Toolkit can be adapted to add value to IFM agencies globally.
Head of the Dispatch and Coordination Department, Lizette Heine, believes this toolkit is the first of its kind. “No other company or organisation has attempted to compile a comprehensive guide like this before, making this a first in South Africa.”
The FPA toolkit, designed especially for IFM practitioners functioning under South African law, holds the following:
- a copy of A Guide to Integrated Fire Management;
- a file containing loose leafed refillable forms;
- awareness material; and
- a flash drive which contains essential electronic forms and documents.
The FPA toolkit bag has additional pockets for a notebook, pen and cell phone.
“The idea behind this toolkit is to strengthen FPAs. By doing this, we are enabling them to build stronger relations with the landowners they serve,” says Henda Kellerman, Communications Manager at Kishugu NPC – the implementer of the GEF FynbosFire Project.
This article was first published on http://kishugu.com/fpa-toolkit-a-first-of-its-kind/ on 3 March 2017.