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GWERU City Council is operating with two fire tenders yet the ideal fleet for the local authority requirements is eight, a council official has said.

Speaking at a press briefing on the fire and emergency services on Thursday, Assistant to the Town Clerk, Tapiwa Marerwa, said although the municipality acquired two fire vehicles through a British charity organization there was still a short fall.

Last year the local authority acquired two state-of-the-art fire engines through the British humanitarian charity organisation, Operation Florian.

Marerwa said council paid $ 33 000 for shipment and related costs for the two fire tenders.

“The council is committed to rehabilitating and recapitalizing our fire and rescue fleet. The target and ideal situation for our city would be eight fire tenders with six running at any given time,” Marerwa said.

“In the 1980s we operated with two fire engines which used to cope with demand but since the 90s the situation has changed as the city expanded in both size and population.”

For years Gweru has been facing challenges with its ageing fire tenders and in 2013 a senior official revealed that the city was operating without fire engines.

That same year 21 vehicles including three commuter omnibuses were reduced to ashes as the city’s fire brigade failed to deal with a blaze due to inadequate equipment.

Source : New Zimbabwe