Though South Africa has less veld fires, people in rural areas use fire wood and other fuel as sources of warmth and to prepare their meals. Today’s fire danger map (8/27) shows most of the area at Very Dangerous to Extremely Dangerous levels. Areas with large a savannah grassland , with a few stretches of level, unforested grassy plains (steppes) , plus some thick wooded sub-tropical forests in some regions. This type of typography makes veld fires spread more quickly as there is ample fuel for the fire across the grasslands. Veld fires which are dangerous to begin with, are also destroying farmland and making yearly food production difficult in this area as it takes time before the land can be tilled again.
Grade 12 pupil (Caleb Kibet Krui and Fortune Mantsho) from Mbilwi Secondary school in Sibasa-Limpopo have invented a firefighter robot using foil and cardboard. Mbilwi Secondary school known as a school for science and technology has won numerous Eskom Science Expo awards.
The geeks have coated their machine with different heat resisting chemicals to help the robot withstand heat. They say their design is to help young people to have interest in science .”We were inspired by the mass robot and drones that soldiers use to fight wars,” said Kirui.
This is the second robot to be invented this year after the prototype of an adult-size firefighting robot, the Shipboard Autonomous Firefighting Robot (SAFFiR) that was unveiled at the Naval Future Force Science and Technology Expo in Washington, D.C in February which is equipped to fight fires at sea.
The boys say their design means human beings no longer have to be at the front-line when battling blazes. Innovation at its best.