The importance of a reliable water pump for fighting fires

Sponsored by Husqvarna

A water pump can be the decider between saving a forest and losing it to fire, says Bruce Hart of SOS Contractors.

The importance of a reliable water pump for fighting fires
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After last year’s fire season, it was reported that two firefighters lost their lives and more than two million hectares of grazing land were burnt in fires across South Africa, while Namibia lost more than half a million hectares.

“Fires are the number one threat in our industry,” says Bruce Hart of SOS Contractors, which provides forestry support services to many growers across KwaZulu-Natal, including SAPPI and MONDI.

Annually, hundreds of naturally occurring fires and criminal arson attacks threaten timber plantations, costing millions of rands in damage and endangering the lives and livelihoods of all those working within the forestry sector or living alongside it.

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“It’s our job to protect our clients’ assets from fire and we need the best equipment to be able to do that effectively,” explains Hart. “Having a high volume, low-pressure pump can make the difference between saving a forest and losing it to a fire.”

Hart elaborates on why he considers these water pumps invaluable tools in his trade:


Being able to load the water pump on the back of a bakkie and carry it to a water source is essential to the job. “It is light and well-designed for portage, enabling us to move it around quickly and safely without needing to use a truck or much manpower.”


It is vital that all equipment required in the highly stressful activity of fighting forest fires functions perfectly all the time. “When a fire is threatening one of my forests, I need to have the assurance that the water pump will start on the first pull. I cannot spend time repairing and struggling with unreliable equipment; this is why I chose Husqvarna’s water pumps,” says Hart. “These pumps not only have quick, easy and steadfast starting systems, but they are also highly dependable”.

High volume

To quickly fill a bulk tank, a pump that will move high volumes of water at low pressure is required. This minimises time away from the fire in order to refill fire-fighting tanks.

“As you will appreciate, we need to be quicker than a Formula 1 pit crew when it comes to refuelling the bulk water tankers used to fight fires so we can get back to the front line and extinguish the flames before they get away from us. The Husqvarna water pumps move high volumes fast, allowing us to quickly get back into action in time to avert disaster.”

Besides saving precious crops and equipment from fires, these portable water pumps can also be used to drain water from flooded areas or move water between reservoirs and fill water troughs; there are a number of vital jobs it can do even when there isn’t an emergency.

Husqvarna’s reliable, portable, high-volume water pumps are invaluable and come in four different sizes; the smallest pumps 12 000l/hour, while the largest pumps 92 000l/hour.

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