MSA Africa, a global leader in the development, manufacture and supply of safety products, supplements its total solutions approach with a comprehensive aftersales and technical support service.
Based at its Johannesburg premises, MSA Africa’s main aftersales service centre offers in-house maintenance or repair work on its full range of safety equipment, along with technical support, to customers undertaking preventative maintenance. “Preventative maintenance helps extend service life and reduces the costs of routine maintenance by preventing any future damage,” comments MSA Africa Aftersales Service Supervisor Theo Nel.
It is crucial that safety-critical products such as Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBAs) are serviced regularly in order to ensure optimal performance throughout the specified service life. “Although there are different service intervals on different equipment, servicing and maintenance needs to be conducted regularly. A maintenance programme has to be in place,” Nel stresses.
In addition to SCBAs, the service centres also carry out maintenance and repair work on MSA Africa’s range of portable and fixed gas detectors. “Customers can simply bring in their equipment that needs servicing to anyone of our service centres in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban, as well as Namibia and Nigeria in Africa,” Nel explains.
MSA Africa has invested R1.5 million in equipping its service centre network to date, with the latest development being launching a centre in Ghana in order to service the West African market. “This represents a significant investment, not only in equipment, but also in skilled personnel,” Nel notes.
There are six qualified technicians in South Africa at present carrying out repair and maintenance work on MSA Africa’s full range of ISO 9001-approved products. Not only are these technicians trained according to US and European certifications, this training is updated on a yearly basis to take into account new products and latest developments.
The service centre network also offers emergency repairs and maintenance, which is vital for mining customers so as to reduce downtime and cut costs. “Most common spare parts are stocked on-site at our service centres, in addition to critical spares that mining operations cannot afford to be without,” Nel highlights.
The main service centre in Johannesburg is divided into three workshop and test areas according to the different product categories. One area is for the calibration of portable and fixed gas detectors and instrumentation, while another is a controlled environment for Self-Contained Self-Rescue Devices (SCSRs). “We have the only workshop facility for this kind of equipment in South Africa, as distributors are not permitted to work on this safety-critical equipment,” Nel highlights. Lastly, the service centre has dedicated equipment to test SCBAs.
A particular focus is customer training, with MSA Africa offering a dedicated training service for strategic customers. “Customers are trained to service their own equipment, as well as how to operate and to care for it.”
Nel concludes that while MSA Africa prides itself on the durability and quality of its equipment, its aftermarket and service support are an integral component of its total solutions approach to meeting customer needs.
MSA Africa has been the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality safety products since 1914. MSA products may be simple to use and maintain, but they are also highly-sophisticated devices and protective gear – the result of countless R&D hours, relentless testing, and an unwavering commitment to quality that saves lives and protects thousands of men and women each and every day. Many of MSA’s most popular products integrate multiple combinations of electronics, mechanical systems and advanced materials to ensure that users around the world remain protected in even the most hazardous of situations. MSA’s dedication to safety has been the key to its impressive year-over-year growth. In eight of the past ten years, MSA has achieved record growth numbers, with annual revenues of more than US$1 billion.