Kathy Gibson reports from Huawei FusionSolar Partner Summit – The power situation in South Africa is driving people to install solar systems – but they could be putting their homes and families at risk.

“Every fourth structural fire in Johannesburg we receive a call for is solar- or load shedding-related,” says Dewet Engelbrecht, CEO of FireOps SA. “And the magnitude of the losses are getting bigger.

“Never be too comfortable in your home or business,” he says.

In the absence of legislation around solar fire safety, Engelbrecht recommends that users opt for technology that has fire safety built-in.

Compared to conventional fires, solar fires are more complex, long-lasting and more devastating, Because of the high-voltage nature of the systems, electrocution is a very real risk for homeowners and fire fighters.

Engelbrecht says his key recommendation for choosing a solar brand is to use high quality systems that are extremely reliable and have safety solutions built-in.