Wow, what a change has swiftly come upon us. Having started my own plumbing Career 14 yrs ago PIRB didn’t exist, it was but a twinkle in IOPSA’s eye. How I learnt my plumbing was through those around me. I did an apprenticeship and have no formal plumbing training. Was this the best way?
Time has shown us that if we only have one source of learning we tend to fall horribly short. I have always been hungry for knowledge, I want to know more, I want to do things the best I can. Why? That’s so much effort, right? I hear plumbers saying I just want to do my work and go home and enjoy my life. What kind of a life is that?
My most valuable asset is myself. My knowledge is power for me to create a better life than just doing my job. I get to create hope for those around me by being able to up sell my skills. When I walk into a client’s house and am able to tell them that according to SANS 10254 their geyser installation needs to be rectified. It makes me feel proud to be a plumber that I am the same quality as an engineer.
How did I learn about the SANS 10254? Only because of PIRB, without this board I would have ended up without a business because as many of you know if you don’t install according to the SANS and sign a COC you are held liable and need to correct your mistakes. Fortunately for me I am hungry to learn and then to teach my fellow workers and employees but unfortunately from what I have learned is that there are many that just don’t care.
They are not proud plumbers because all they want to do is work with their hands and spend no time in self-investment. Yes, I work with my hands, but I need to work with my brain and learn new things. In my life time watching how fast technology has advanced is breath takingly incredible. Surely the plumbing industry is advancing as well? If you don’t think it is, you better get out from under that rock because you will very shortly find your table without food.
IOPSA is working hard at keeping its members current on what PIRB is doing and how they are both advancing the South African National Standards (SANS). They are changing peoples’ perceptions of what a plumber is. But that won’t happen unless we educate ourselves. So PIRB looked at the Australian system that is working so well and how can we apply it in South Africa. Yes, it’s a work in progress and is being constantly worked at by Lea and Martin’s Team.
So the real question is to be or not to be CPD? What is Continuous professional Development?
In many professional industries such as doctors etc. What is it for? And why all the fuss and why do I now at the age of 40+ have to start doing these CPD points. The webinars, the meetings, this is not what I signed up for as a plumber right? Well you are wrong. I don’t want to be classified with the same guy who calls himself a plumber but who’s workmanship is sub standard and doesn’t even know his own regulations which he signed up to the day he decided to be a plumber.
I am proud to be a plumber and if CPD is the way to ensure I and my fellow plumbers increase our standard of work, I whole heartedly embrace the challenges that will come with it. Because I know the future moves on and will do so without me unless I keep up with the changing times. The only constant in our lives is “change”.
What saddens me is that my fellow plumbers are fighting this change and instead of seeing the CPD system as a great way to increase their work and knowledge they see it as a waste of their time. They are not prepared to invest any time into their self-development. My question to you is how without Continuous Professional Development are you going to comply to the changing standards?
To become an IOPSA member, please contact Celmarie on email@example.com
JOIN TODAY AND RECEIVE A FREE WEBINAR to the value of R250!
The Institute of Plumbing South Africa (IOPSA) sets out to achieve the best for the plumbing industry, and strives to share the rules and regulations in a simplified and straightforward manner.
IOPSA is proud to announce that the Federated Employer’s Mutual Assurance Company (FEM) has approved a second year of funding for a much-needed grant which will allow IOPSA to engage the services of a Health and Safety Officer, who is an expert in their field.
The position will carry great responsibility and the person will have an extensive knowledge in this field. With an in-house Health and Safety Officer, Doug Michell, IOPSA will be able to provide further occupational health and safety training and advice to members as it has for the past year.
FEM was established as a mutual insurer in 1936 and, on the introduction of the Workmen's Compensation Act 1941, was granted a licence to continue to transact workmen's compensation insurance for the building industry. Its business operations are essentially confined to the insurance of employers against their liabilities under the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act 1993.
Over the past year IOPSA has achieved the following through the use of the FEM grant:
For the upcoming year, IOPSA will be improving and expanding the program to add more vale to its members.
IOPSA will be continuing the weekly Free webinars for its members as well as including some exciting new additions such as an FEM section on the plumbers app where IOPSA members will have access to safety checklists for each task as well as vehicle checklists which can automatically be sent to direct managers once completed.
For more information on the services IOPSA offers in regards to health and safety please feel free to contact our national office on 011 454 0025.
To become an IOPSA Member please contact Celmarie on firstname.lastname@example.org
Join today and receive a FREE webinar worth R250!
I sat across from him and listened intently, my blood began to boil.
“How would you know? You’re just a plumber who plays with sewerage all day!” said the kind gentleman, after I offered some input to a technical problem on site.
It has been said that a real warrior is one who can exercise self-control. It is safe to say that on that day, I was the greatest warrior the world had ever seen. Instead of climbing over the table and throttling the kind gentleman, I exercised extreme self-control and remained firmly fixed to my chair. My mind on the other hand was working overtime. Flashes of me taking flight over the table and wrestling the kind gentleman to the floor ran through my mind frame by frame as my imagination ran riot. Let’s just say that in my short daydream, it didn’t end well for him.
After leaving the presence of the kind gentleman, who remained unharmed, it got me thinking: Why would he say such a thing? Does he really believe a plumber’s day is spent in the company of raw sewerage? Does who honestly believe that plumbers are unable to contribute to society in a meaningful way?
After some pondering I came to following conclusion: In the case of the kind gentleman and his “brilliantly” thought out words, there is a clear difference between his perception of what “just a plumber” does, and the reality of what a plumber actually does. You see, the kind gentleman’s perception is that all a plumber does is play with sewerage all day for a living. While handling sewerage is indeed something that falls under a plumber’s scope of work or expertise, it’s certainly not how we spend our days.
The reality of what a plumber is and does, and the kind gentleman’s narrow-minded perception are worlds apart.
What the kind gentleman fails to see, is how important “just a plumber” actually is. He is blindly unaware that “just plumbers” are responsible for the installation and maintenance of the systems that deliver clean water and remove waste resulting in the protection of countless people from communicable disease. There is acknowledgement from many within the public health community that clean, drinkable water has most likely protected more lives and extended life expectancy more than any medical advancement.
I challenge anyone to live without water and drainage for 24 hours. Turn off the main water supply to your home or office and you will quickly find out how important having water to your taps and toilets really is.
So next time you turn on your tap and fresh water magically appears, recognize who was responsible for delivering that simple convenience to you that is oftentimes taken for granted. When you flush your toilet and everything vanishes in front of your eyes, a plumber made it happen. When you are next enjoying that hot revitalizing shower or bath, recognize that it was the “just a plumber” who made that pleasurable experience possible.
In the words of the late American-born actor, Spencer Tracy: “Acting is not an important job in the scheme of things. Plumbing is!”
As plumbers, what we do really does matter.
Long live “Just A Plumber”
Written by: Dean Cane
Modern Plumbing Works
IOPSA Gauteng Vice Chairman
A record number of youthful Plumbers joined the IOPSA KZN Plumbers evening on 15 February at KWIKOT Durban. With the back doors of the Training room open, we had additional chairs and standing guests listening attentively. Barry Chapman of our KZN Ballito Sub-region welcomed and thanked everyone, thereafter introduced Michael Botha of KWIKOT who gave a brief chat to the large crowd.
The venue was bustling with Plumbers old and new and Networking was in full force as ideas and thoughts were exchanged before and after the meeting. Steve Brown lead the Presentation showing the abundance of Value in IOPSA Membership. Mark De Wet from our National Office, addressed the keen plumbers and notified them of the changes to SANS 10254 (The installation, maintenance, replacement and repair of fixed electric storage water heating systems). The questions posed to IOPSA thereafter were met with great interaction from an enthusiastic crowd. Steve Brown our acting Executive Director and National Operations Manager captivated the crowds and his energy seemingly rubbed off onto these Professional Plumbers, creating an insightful and memorable evening.
A great thanks goes out to our Host KWIKOT, senior Management and Staff for their hospitality. Further thanks to Bianca Brown and the KZN Committee for their outstanding efforts in getting the plumbers together.
“Starting 2018 on a positive note”, is something all registered plumbers in South Africa could say with the release of the latest edition of SANS 10254 for the installation, maintenance, replacement and repair of fixed electric storage water heating systems.
As plumbers, we sometimes find it difficult to keep up to date with the requirements of the SANS standards, and may feel that changes to the standards will cause a world of confusion and frustration in an already challenging work environment.
This is certainly not the case with the changes to SANS 10254, if anything the changes have made the standard easier to understand and brings it in line with some of the other current standards like SANS 10106 and SANS 1352 for solar and heat pump installations respectively.
We will be going into more detail on the changes over the next few months to better explain the requirements, but for now, we will only be looking at one of the key changes to the standard that may have the greatest effect on all geyser installations.
The key change in SANS 10254 requires that; on completion of a geyser installation, maintenance or replacement of components, a Certificate of compliance from the registered professional body for plumbers, being the Plumbing Industry Registration Board (PIRB) register (in terms of the relevant national legislation), shall be issued to the owner of the installation and to the body requiring such a certificate, along with a written notice of any non-compliance.
In simple terms; plumbers are now required to issue a PIRB Certificate of compliance for all work on a geyser, along with a non-compliance informing the geyser owner/ user of compliance issues.
This calls for plumbers to up-skill themselves and ensure that when completing work on a geyser, they understand the requirements of the standard not only to issue a Certificate of compliance, but also be able to note all non-compliance on the installation.
The issuing of a PIRB certificate of Compliance has already been a requirement of SANS 10106 for Solar geysers since 2014 and SANS 1352 for Heat Pumps since 2012. The inclusion of the COC requirement to SANS 10254 ensures that all hot water cylinder installations requirements are aligned to promote and uplift the quality of installation work and protect the well-being of the consumer and the environment.
IOPSA is available to assist all IOPSA members to ensure that they understand the requirements of the Standards, along with the changes to SANS 10254. IOPSA has Compliance table as well as Warranty and Geyser failure guideline documents available free of charge to all members. IOPSA can also assist and advise members on all the available training to plumbers to uplift their skills and ensure their growth within the industry.
Plumbing Certificates of Compliance are issued by licensed plumbers to certify that their plumbing work complies with all regulatory installations requirements.
According to The Plumbing Industry Registration Board, CoC is a system and process whereby a licensed plumbing practitioner will self-certify their plumbing work by issuing a plumbing certificate of compliance to the relevant owner, municipality, local authority and / or insurance company. Through the process the licensed plumber takes ownership for their plumbing work and is held accountable for the work he has done.
Certificate of compliance is a form of quality assurance.
Image credit: Pixabay
A PLUMBING CERTIFICATE OF COMPLIANCE WILL BE ISSUED FOR MOST PLUMBING WORK, INCLUDING:
A plumbing CoC is issued within five working days of the completion of the said plumbing works. Only a licensed plumber may purchase and issue compliance certificates. It is illegal for anyone to work on a plumbing installation if they are not a qualified plumber or do not work under the adequate supervision of a qualified plumber.
Registered people under the category of qualified plumbers are qualified to carry out plumbing works and may supervise non-qualified plumbers or plumbing apprentices; however, they will not be allowed to purchase or issue plumbing CoCs for plumbing installations.
View the Original article here.
Lizé joined the IOPSA Western Cape team as the regional secretary. Lize has come from being a managing agent for a Body Corporate of a building with 72 units.
Within this position Lizé was exposed to a multitude of plumbing issues where and IOPSA committee member was called in to assist and thus she has built on her plumbing knowledge.
Lizé is responsible for the smooth running and administration of the Western Cape region as well as all of the events. She hopes to increase membership and events within her region in order to support the IOPSA members with knowledge and skills.
Should you wish to get in contact the Western Cape region, please feel free to contact them on the details below.
Tel: 021 532 1084
IOPSA Western Cape
137 Monte Vista Boulevard
An inaugural IOPSA meeting was held in Bethlehem at the Gemsbok Club. It was certainly a long process in putting this event together and IOPSA would like to thank Mark and Linda of M&M Plumbing for making this event a great success.
There was no shortage of commitment in terms of making this event happen, with Gert and Tokkie Fraser as well as Rudi van der Merwe and Andre Van Zyl travelling a round trip of 500km’s to attend and present in support of this event in Bethlehem.
Steve Brown travelled from Durban, another extensive round trip of 800km. It was great that Mark and Linda were able to schedule a meeting with the local Building Control Officers at their offices; this in support of advising them of the changes within IOPSA and the PIRB.
IOPSA extended invitation to the Building control officers to attend the weekly IOPSA Building Control officer training Webinars. For noting, one of the Senior Building inspectors attended the IOPSA meeting that evening and was/is very supportive of IOPSA and PIRB initiatives.
A good start for a small town being an attendance of around 14 people, we wish to thank those in attendance. IOPSA would, once again, like to thank Mark and Linda for their commitment to taking on the position of sub-regional coordinator for the Bethlehem region we look forward to future meetings to identify and develop the region.
This has been one of IOPSA’s goals to extend to outer-lying areas as we have managed to do in the Gauteng, Southern Cape and KwaZulu Natal regions.
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I recently required assistance with a compliance issue with the local council building inspector and was referred to Mark de Wet (Technical Manager).
Mark responded in good time and found a solution that was accepted by the council.
We have been IOPSA members for over 10 years and up until recently did not see the membership as beneficial to ourselves.
We also found the webinar’s very informative on current trends and very valuable to our staff.
I wish to encourage other IOPSA members to engage with the organisation whenever there are any issues or complications on site as IOPSA membership includes this service.
I for one have a new and better perception of IOPSA and would like to thank Mark de Wet and the team for the excellent service received.
Gerhard van Graan,
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