“When I go to work in the morning, that very fact makes the world a safer place”, says Gareth Selway, summing up his vocational motivation in a single sentence. As Deputy Managing Director of Fire-Rite, Selway, together with his team, fights day in, day out at many different levels to protect people and property from fire disasters. “Fire-Rite has a very comprehensive fire protection portfolio that cuts into four divisions: Prevention, Detection, Containment and Evacuation”, Selway explains. The 32-strong workforce offers clients the full bandwidth of fire protection. “Every client receives personalised consultation and independent, professional support – irrespective of whether they are a multinational company or the hairdresser round the corner.” Based in Caerphilly, 8 miles inland from the Welsh capital, Cardiff, the company has over the past 16 years built up a substantial base of notable clients from a whole range of sectors and established itself as a trustworthy market leader in Wales and the West of England.
“The most frequent sources of fire hazard are probably to be found in industrial kitchens. The appliances used in such kitchens can start a fire that can then spread to combustible substances, such as oils and left-overs”, Selway explains. “The worst-case scenario is an outbreak at night when people elsewhere in the building are asleep. That’s why it’s essential at such locations to practise evacuation procedures with the staff and to take appropriate precautionary measures.”
“Like us, Mercedes-Benz stands for trust and lasting quality. That’s why we went for the brand, and we’re 100% happy with our choice.” Fire-Rite’s workers are assisted in their day-to-day installation, inspection and service work by four Citan and four Vito vans from Mercedes-Benz. All eight vans have been in use since 2013 and cover around 20,000 miles a year.
Our employees use them to transport the materials, tools and clothing they need when out on field service assignments. Thanks to the height of its cargo bay, the Citan, for example, offers enough space for a small desk on which our engineers and fitters can write up reports.
“Over the past years, people’s awareness of the need for fire protection has certainly changed for the better, a fact we here on this fair isle owe to no small degree to an ordinance that came into effect in 2006”, says Selway. According to this, property owners are obliged to comply with stricter and professional fire protection measures for their buildings: this is where the specialists from Fire-Rite come into play. And that’s why Gareth Selway has to dash off to a number of appointments with clients and take care of other important duties immediately after our interview. “My standard working day is often taxing, but all the more exciting for it”, says Selway and laughs. He then gets back to work in order, once again, to make the world a safer place.
Photos: ©elitesigns.co.uk / © Fire-Rite