The Institution of Fire Engineers South Africa Branch holds 70th AGM
The Institution of Fire Engineers South Africa Branch held its 70th Annual General Meeting (AGM) online on Friday, 18 November 2022.
Andrew Greig, the secretary/treasurer, presented the Branch Report to the members. Topics presented included were SAQA: IFE qualifications must be submitted by individuals to SAQA for evaluation as a foreign qualification, together with the latest syllabus. Employers should then accept the applicant's qualification. The Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA): The IFE South Africa is now an accredited ECSA register training provider.
Representatives from the IFE have participated on various committees including: South African Qualification and Certification Committee for the Fire Industry (SAQCC - Fire), Fire Fighting Equipment Traders Association (FFETA) and the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS).
IFE CPD Courses
The IFE has presented an excellent suite of up-to-date and relevant fire services/industry courses most of which are currently held online. The IFE College Platform, developed during COVID, has continued to evolve as more courses are held and more data is collected. The LGSETA has accredited our Fire Risk Assessment course for three years. The Certified Fire Safety Officer presented during the year comprised five modules on a stand alone/block release:
• Fire Safety Management – Fire Safety Legislation and Fire Risk Assessment
• Fundamentals of Fire Investigation (IAAI Accredited)
• Interpretation and Application of Local Authority By-Laws
• Examination of Building Plans and Conducting Fire Inspections
• Fundamentals of Design and Evaluation of Engineered Solutions
The Fire Safety Officer qualification is being assessed by IFE UK on a Level 4 or 5 level.
Another e-learning course is the Level 2 Certificate 12 month course preparing students for the IFE international exam.
IFE council members’ election
Voting was held for seven seats on the Branch Council. Council members are Marika Du Plessis, Morne Germishuys, Andrew Greig, Given Mgiba, Stenford Mutaringe, Cathy Stewart, Mike Webber, Tracey Whittaker, Saritha Wolff (President) and Marcel Wood. Download PDF
• October 2021 Exams were held on 4 and 5 October 2022: 137 candidates in South Africa and neighbouring countries wrote 188 papers.
• March 2022 Exams were held on 31 March and 1 April 2022: 127 candidates in South Africa and neighbouring countries wrote 171 papers.
• An encouraging increase in the number of students taking exams in Cape Town has been due to them receiving bursaries from the City.
The Administration has continued to provide an excellent service with improved education resulting in enhanced market reputation as evidenced by feedback information. The South African Branch has continued to support the objectives of the Institution of Fire Engineers and provided value to Branch members and others in the South African fire fraternity. IFE South Africa has continued to deliver a well-developed set of training courses; up-skilling and building capacity in Fire Departments and improving staff capabilities in fire engineering private companies.
International General Assembly
Andrew Greig, the Branch IGA Representative, reported on matters discussed during two workshops and meetings involving IFE Branches from around the world.
In her presidential address, Saritha Wolff said, “Ethics and professionalism need to play a decisive role in all aspects of fire safety, fire engineering and fire design. From personal observations in various industries, I think we still have a way to go in these areas. I also referred to the Fire Safety Officer Development Programme which the IFE SA launched in 2016. In my inaugural address, we had three candidates complete all six short courses. That number has increased significantly due to the rigorous marketing of the Administrators and the buy-in from the Western Cape Disaster Management. Our most popular course is the Fundamentals of Evaluation and Design of Engineered Solutions. This specific course creates a great platform for marketing of the other courses as attendees realise they have a lack of foundational knowledge in fire safety legislation.”
“The Branch is still committed to hosting technical workshops and information sessions on topics that will promote and enhance fire safety holistically. The members are once again encouraged to provide opinion on the subjects that are relevant and topical.”
“The Branch needs input from committed and enthusiastic individuals who can envisage a better future for the fire industry in South Africa and in Africa. It might seem overwhelming, but every small step takes us closer to a better tomorrow.”
“I want to welcome Marike du Plessis, Dan Mokonyama, Stenford Mutaringe and Cathy Stewart as new members to the Branch Council and Mike Webber and Andrew Greig as returning council members. I want to thank the out-going council members, Bevan Wolff, Rocky Ingram and Stuart Jeacocks for their contribution to the IFE Branch Council. I would like to extend a special thank you to Mark Te Water who has been an active member of the branch and has served on the council and as president. Mark has decided to retire from the council and had not been available for re-nomination. Mark, we wish you all the best in your retirement endeavours. I know that you are not sitting in a rocking chair on the veranda overlooking Table Mountain. You are still actively involved in making our country safer from a risk perspective.”
A presentation of Certificates and Awards presentation was played.
Quote of the week
“I can think of no more stirring symbol of man’s humanity to man than a fire engine.” ~ Kurt Vonnegut, 1922–2007
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