By CLOZZEN BIKALE
Zambia Air Service Training Institute (ZASTI) has trained 14 Emergency Response Team members (ERT) in aviation firefighting sponsored by First quantum minerals (FQM) at a cost of K275, 000.
First quantum minerals (FQM) Trident Limited assistant General Manager, Junior Keysea said FQM has realized the importance of having a team with equipment and necessary skills to protect lives and property, adding that is this the reason why they have a full team of trained and experienced aviation fire fighters.
“FQM Trident is committed to safeguarding life and property around in our operations, surrounding communities and beyond”, he said.
He expressed confidence that the emergency response team will protect the community using the knowledge and skills gained to reach out, care and build a sense of fire safety that can make a positive difference in the community.
Mr Keysea said earlier they had challenges to find a right service provider and they had to go to South Africa but luckily they tumbled across ZASTI.
“To the graduating emergency response team members, you have done us proud, this is not just fulfilling for your career development but another addition to the firefighting training and safety emergency response skills attained over a period of time”, he said.
And Officiating at a graduation ceremony in basic firefighting training in Kalumbila , ZASTI principal, Brigadier General, Mathias Kyembe (Rtd) challenged the new 14 graduates to take what they have learned in their course of study and execute their duties with passion.
Brig Gen Kyembe said the primary purpose and task of aviation fire fighters is to conduct emergency response if any emergency occurs.
He urged the graduates to use their knowledge and skills as firemen in a powerful and privileged manner to make a difference to the lives of every single life within FQM Trident Limited and beyond.
“When an emergency takes place you are expected to quickly be able to extinguish potential ensuing fires which is paramount to giving people the best possible chance of making it safely out of the aircraft,” he said.
He said the move by FQM Trident Limited to sponsor students to train in aviation firefighting course is a model for what a vibrant institution should be in any developing country like Zambia.
Meanwhile, emergency response Acting Team Leader, Finniber Kaleya said, with the knowledge they have acquired, they will be able to effectively provide emergency responses and rescue of passengers and aircrew in emergency cases.
Mr Kaleya said their lecturers took time to ensuring that they acquire full knowledge in aviation firefighting hence the 90 percent pass rate.
He said the community and passengers are now covered as they can now pass safely.
Mr Kaleya has since thanked FQM Trident Limited for the opportunity given to them to undergo a course in basic aviation firefighting training.