19 April 2017

South Africa: Ekurhuleni Invests in Improving Disaster Readiness

Pretoria — The City of Ekurhuleni is to spend R94 million to improve its capacity to deal with emergency situations in the region.

Executive Mayor Mzwandile Masina said the money has been budgeted for and it will go towards firefighting, rescue operations, ambulances and primary response unit activities aimed at improving the city's disaster management capabilities.

The city plans to construct six new fire stations in the next five years, especially in areas that do not have such facilities. Money will also go into revamping and upgrading some of the old fire stations in the region. Long-term plans for this programme have already been put in place.

Among the new fire stations to be built is the Albertina Sisulu fire station in Kempton Park, which is expected to improve the turnaround time in emergencies on the busy Albertina Sisulu freeway linking Tshwane and Ekurhuleni. The construction of this facility is already underway and will be completed before the end of the year.

Thokoza fire station is currently under construction, while the Farrarmere fire station in Benoni is being revamped.

"We aim to curb the perishing of properties to fires and floods, especially in informal settlements. We must also constantly improve our ability to respond timeously and effectively to such problems and limit the loss of lives and property, especially among the most vulnerable of our people," Mayor Masina said.

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