The LONDON FIRE BRIGADE (LFB) is the statutory fire and rescue
It is the second-largest of all the fire services in the United
Kingdom , after the national
Scottish Fire and Rescue Service
Dany Cotton is the
In 2013/14 the LFB handled 171,067 999 emergency calls . Of the calls it actually mobilised to, 20,934 were fires , including 10,992 that were of a serious nature, making it one of the busiest fire brigades in the world. In the same 12-month period, it received 3,172 hoax calls , the highest number of any UK fire service, but crews were mobilised to only 1,424 of them. In 2015/16 the LFB received 171,488 emergency calls. These consisted of: 20,773 fires, 30,066 special service callouts, and 48,696 false alarms.
As well as firefighting , the LFB also responds to road traffic
collisions , floods , trapped-in-lift releases, and other incidents
such as those involving hazardous materials or major transport
accidents. It also conducts emergency planning and performs fire
safety inspections and education. It does not provide an ambulance
service as this function is performed by the
* 1 History
* 1.1 Commissioners and chief officers
* 2 Organisation * 3 Legislative powers
* 4 Staffing
* 4.1 Role structure * 4.2 Historical ranks * 4.3 Recruitment and training * 4.4 Shift pattern * 4.5 Promotion
* 5 Firefighting, special services and fire prevention
* 5.2 Response times
* 5.2.1 Mutual assistance
* 5.3 Determining the size of an incident
* 6 Stations and equipment
* 6.1 Stations and districts
* 6.2 Appliances
* 6.3 Improvements
* 6.4 Modernisation
* 7 Regional control centre
* 8 Major or notable incidents
* 8.1 Major incident procedure * 8.2 Notable incidents * 8.3 Notable exercises
* 9 In popular culture * 10 See also * 11 References * 12 External links
The 1861 Tooley Street fire from Billingsgate
Following a multitude of ad-hoc firefighting arrangements and the
Great Fire of
Several large fires, most notably at the
Palace of Westminster
During the Second World War the country's brigades were amalgamated
into a single
National Fire Service . The separate
In 1986 the Greater
In 2007 the LFB vacated its
Lambeth headquarters and moved to a site
in Union Street,
COMMISSIONERS AND CHIEF OFFICERS
Dany Cotton is the current commissioner, having taken up the role in January 2017. She holds the Queen\'s Fire Service Medal . Ron Dobson was the prior commissioner and served in the LFB from 1979; he was awarded the Queen's Fire Service Medal in 2005, and in 2011 a CBE for his distinguished contribution to the fire and rescue service.
* 1833 to 1861: James Braidwood (director of the
On the creation of the Greater
The internal LFB organisation consists of four directorates that all report to the Commissioner. They are:
* Fire and community safety (reports to the Deputy Commissioner); * Operational policy and training; * Resources; * Corporate services.
The LFB's headquarters since 2007 is located in Union Street in
Fire and rescue authorities in England come under the government department formerly known as the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM). This department was responsible for legislation covering fire authorities; however, in 2006, a structural change to central government led to the creation of the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG). It is now responsible for fire and resilience in England, including London.
The Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 changed many working practices; it was brought in to replace the Fire Services Act 1947 and repealed several existing acts, many going back fifty years. The full list of acts repealed can be found here:
The 2004 Act was drafted in response to the Independent Review of the Fire Service, often referred to as the Bain Report, after its author Professor Sir George Bain . It recommended radical changes to many working procedures and led to a national firefighter strike in 2002–2003 .
Further changes to the legislative, organisational and structural fabric of the brigade, which could include varying the attendance time, the location of front line appliances and number of personnel, plus mandatory performance targets, priorities and objectives are set by the DCLG in the form of a document called the Fire and Rescue Service National Framework. The framework is set annually by the government and applies to all brigades in England. Responsibility for the rest of the UK fire service is devolved to the various parliaments and assemblies. On country-wide issues, the Chief Fire Officers Association provides the collective voice on fire, rescue and resilience issues. Membership is made up from senior officers above the rank of Assistant Chief Officer, to Chief Fire Officer (or the new title of Brigade Manager).
Staff of the
The old titles are still in use in many of the UK's other brigades and fire authorities.
FORMER TITLE CURRENT TITLE
Leading Firefighter Crew Manager
Sub-Officer Watch Manager A
Station Officer Watch Manager B
Assistant Divisional Officer Station Manager
Divisional Officer Group Manager
Senior Divisional Officer Deputy Assistant Commissioner
Assistant Chief Officer Assistant Commissioner
Deputy Chief Officer Deputy Commissioner
1833–1938 1938–1965 1965–1992 1992–2001 2001–2003
Fireman 4th Class Fireman Fireman/Firewoman Firefighter Firefighter
Fireman 3rd Class Senior Fireman Leading Fireman/Firewoman Leading Firefighter Crew Commander (A)
Fireman 2nd Class Sub-Officer Sub-Officer Sub-Officer Crew Commander (B) (or Watch Commander A )
Fireman 1st Class Station Officer Station Officer Station Officer Watch Commander (B)
Junior Fireman Assistant District Officer Assistant Divisional Officer (Station Commander from 1986) Assistant Divisional Officer (or Station Commander) Station Commander (or Deputy Group Commander)
Senior Fireman District Officer Divisional Officer Divisional Officer Divisional Officer (or Group Commander)
Senior District Officer Deputy Assistant Chief Officer Assistant Chief Officer (or Area Commander) Assistant Chief Officer (or Area Commander)
Deputy Superintendent Deputy Chief Officer Deputy Chief Fire Officer Deputy Chief Officer Deputy Chief Officer
Assistant Chief Fire Officer (or Area Commander)
Superintendent Chief Officer Chief Fire Officer Chief Fire Officer Chief Fire Officer
RECRUITMENT AND TRAINING
In the last 24 months the LFB have run 3 firefighter recruitment
campaigns, however in previous years have seen fewer or even none.
There are many factors as to why they would run a recruitment drive,
as there is actually no set recruitment drive for firefighters.
Professional firefighter training usually takes place at various
After training school, firefighters serve a one-year period of probation; qualification and full pay are not reached until the candidate completes a development folder which usually takes around 12–18 months. Ongoing training – both theoretical and practical – continues throughout the firefighter's career.
In December 2010 the LFB and Fire Brigades Union (FBU) agreed on a new shift pattern for front-line firefighters: two 10½-hour day shifts then two 13½-hour night shifts followed by four days off.
The agreement followed two 8-hour daytime strikes by the FBU in protest at the LFB's intention to change the shift pattern from two 9-hour day shifts then two 15-hour night shifts followed by three days off, to two 12-hour day shifts then two 12-hour night shifts followed by four days off.
In order for a firefighter to gain promotion he or she must go
through an assessment centre and reach the required standard set out
by the Brigade. This process will be followed for each subsequent role
the individual applies for, up to and including Assistant
Commissioner. Appointments above the role of Assistant Commissioner
are overseen by elected members of The
Some promotion exams can be substituted by qualifications from the Institution of Fire Engineers . Firefighters and civilians such as building inspectors, scientists, surveyors and other practising professionals, take these qualifications either by written test or research.
Future promotion exams will be set using the Integrated Personal Development System (IPDS).
FIREFIGHTING, SPECIAL SERVICES AND FIRE PREVENTION
In 2010/11, the LFB handled a total of 212,657 emergency calls, including 5,241 hoax calls (although it only mobilised to 2,248 of those malicious false alarms). During the same period, it dealt with 13,367 major fires. There were 6,731 dwelling fires, including 748 that had been started deliberately; 73 people died in 58 fatal fires.
In addition to conflagrations , LFB firefighters respond to "special services". LFB firefighters at a building fire; one uses an axe (right) to gain entry
A special service is defined as every other non-fire related emergency, such as:
* Lift releases (9,395 in 2010/11); * Effecting entry/exit (7,276 in 2010/11); * Flooding (6,956 in 2010/11); * Traffic collisions (3,604 in 2010/11); * Spills and leaks (1,479 in 2010/11); * Assisting other agencies (855 in 2010/11); * "Making safe" operations (782 in 2010/11); * Animal rescues (583 in 2010/11); * Hazardous materials incidents (353 in 2010/11); * General evacuations (322 in 2010/11); * Suicides or attempts (229 in 2010/11); and * Waterborne rescues (38 in 2010/11).
The full scope of the brigade's duties and powers is enshrined in the Fire and Rescue Act 2004.
Firefighters and, in some cases, specialist teams from the brigade's fire investigation unit, based at Dowgate, also investigate arson incidents, often working alongside the police and providing evidence in court. In 2008/09, deliberate fires accounted for 28% of all those attended by the LFB, a 28% reduction on the previous year.
The other core duty of the brigade is to "prevent damage", and day-to-day fire prevention duties.
The LFB tackles a fire at an electrical substation in Sydenham .
The LFB provides fire cover according to a system of four risk categories which have traditionally been used across the UK, where every building is rated for its risk on a scale from "A" down to "D". The risk category determines the minimum number of appliances to be sent in a pre-determined mobilisation.
Areas with a medium density of large buildings and/or population, such as multi-storey residential blocks, will generally be classified "B" risk. Two fire engines will be deployed, with one to arrive within five minutes and the second within eight minutes.
Damping down using an aerial ladder platform after a fire in Camden
In 2007/08, the first fire engine mobilised to a 999 call arrived within five minutes 58.8% of the time, and within eight minutes 90% of the time. The second fire engine deployed arrived within eight minutes 81.9% of the time, and within ten minutes 92.4% of the time.
In 2010/11, the average response time of the first appliance to the scene was 5 minutes 34 seconds (6 minute target), and the second appliance was 6 minutes 53 seconds (8 minute target).
In 2015/16, the average response time for the first appliance to the scene was 5 minutes 33 seconds (6 minute target), and the second appliance to the scene was 6 minutes 55 seconds (8 minute target).
The Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 gives the UK fire services the ability to call upon other services or fire authorities in what is known as mutual assistance. For example, the LFB played a comprehensive role in assisting Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service at the Buncefield fire in 2005.
In 2015/16 the LFB assisted at 567 "over the border" incidents.
The other fire services that adjoin the LFB are:
* Essex County Fire and Rescue Service * Kent Fire and Rescue Service * Surrey Fire and Rescue Service * Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service * Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service * Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service
DETERMINING THE SIZE OF AN INCIDENT
The LFB, along with all other UK fire and rescue services, determines the size of a fire or special service by the final number of appliances mobilised to deal with it. For example, two appliances are despatched to a "B" risk area in response to a fire call in a residential house. The officer-in-charge can request additional appliances by transmitting a radio message such as, "make pumps 4", or if persons are believed to be involved or trapped, "make pumps 4, persons reported". The control room will then deploy a further two appliances making a total of four. Informally, firefighters refer to such fires as 'a make up' or 'a 4-pumper'; when the fire is out, if no other pumping appliances were despatched, this would be recorded as a '4-pump fire'.
If an incident is more serious, it can be escalated straight to a 6-,
8- or 10-pump fire and beyond – in
Examples of 25-pump fires include the blaze at Alexandra Palace in 1980, and at the Royal Marsden Hospital, Chelsea in 2008, the latter also involving four aerial appliances. The King\'s Cross fire in 1987 was a 30-pump fire, as was the blaze in numerous shops on Oxford Street in April 2007. Pumping appliances can only operate with a minimum crew of four, and a maximum of six (although this is rare) so it is possible to estimate the number of firefighters attending an incident by multiplying the number of pumps by five. For example, the Cutty Sark fire was described as "an 8-pump fire attended by 40 firefighters".
Core services are paid for by London's council tax payers and through central government funding known as a grant settlement; each council tax payer's bill will include a precept – a specific part of their bill that contributes to the funding of the fire brigade. Those in need of the LFB's services in an emergency do not pay, but the brigade can provide additional special services for which it may charge where there is no immediate threat to life or imminent risk of injury.
Examples of these special services which may be charged for include the clearing of flooded commercial premises, the use of brigade equipment for supplying or removing water, and making structures safe in cases where there is no risk of personal injury to the public.
SAFETY AND FIRE PREVENTION
LFB firefighters and watch officers often visit residential and
commercial premises to advise on hazard risk assessment and fire
prevention. They also provide safety education to schools and youth
groups. Each of the
In 2010/11, the LFB made 70,016 home fire safety visits. Over 100,000 children are seen each year by the brigade's schools team. Around half of all serious fires occur in the home, and many house fires attended by the LFB no smoke alarm was fitted, despite the LFB fitting tens of thousands in homes every year.
STATIONS AND EQUIPMENT
As of 2014, the LFB has 103 fire stations, including one river
station, across the 32
The LFB is currently formed into five divisions: Northern, Eastern, Western, Southeastern and Southwestern. As of 2013, 21 fire stations were located in the Northern Division and have call signs prefixed "A"; 26 were in the Eastern Division with call signs prefixed "F"; Western Division consisted of 21 stations with "G"-prefixed call signs; 22 were under the Southeastern Division with an "E" prefix; and the remaining 22 were based in the Southwestern Division, call signs prefixed "H". As part of this organisation, many stations were re-coded.
Below is a complete listing, as of 2014, of the 102 fire stations of
The Northern District Command is designated as "A" or "Alpha". There
are currently 17 fire stations in the Northern District. The Northern
District serves the following boroughs of London: Barnet , Camden ,
Enfield , Haringey , Islington , the
City of Westminster and the City
The Southeastern District Command is designated as "E" or "Echo".
There are currently 19 fire stations in the Southeastern District. The
Southeastern District serves the following boroughs of London: Bexley
, Bromley , Greenwich , Lewisham , and
The Eastern District Command is designated as "F" or "Foxtrot". There are currently 23 fire stations in the Eastern District. The Eastern District serves the following boroughs of London: Barking and Dagenham , Hackney , Havering , Newham , Redbridge , Tower Hamlets , and Waltham Forest . Western District
The Western District Command is designated as "G" or "Golf". There
are currently 21 fire stations in the Western District. The Western
District serves the following boroughs of London: Brent, Ealing,
The Southwestern District Command is designated as "H" or "Hotel". There are currently 22 fire stations in the Southwestern District, including the independent River Station, the quarters of the Fireboat. The Southwestern District serves the following boroughs of London: Croydon, Kingston upon Thames, Lambeth, Merton, Richmond upon Thames, Sutton, and Wandsworth.
All 102 LFB stations (not counting the river station) have a conventional fire appliance known as a dual pump ladder. Around 55 stations are also assigned one additional pump. Numerous other stations are home to a range of other specialist vehicles.
The stations that are assigned both a dual pump ladder and a pump are generally the busier stations receiving over 2,000 emergency calls (known colloquially by firefighters as "shouts") per year. They may also be stations of strategic importance, or those located in areas considered to be high risk. The remaining stations equipped with a single pump ladder generally attend fewer than 2,000 calls per year.
In 2012, the LFB purchased five Mini Countrymans for conversion into instant response vehicles. The two-seat cars are fitted with six extinguishers (two each of water, foam and powder), plus a first-aid kit and defibrillator, and may be deployed to investigate automatic alarms actuating and smaller fires such as those in rubbish bins which do not require a full-sized engine and crew. The brigade has indicated a wish to add more smaller vehicles to its fleet, including crossover utility vehicles which could be fitted with water pumps, breathing apparatus and pull-out equipment drawers, and with enough space for four firefighters.
In 2016, the LFB announced they would be replacing the
older-generation (currently used)
Mercedes-Benz Atego pump appliances
with brand new
Mercedes-Benz Ategos which include new features such
as: an improved 'crew cab' for the comfort and safety of firefighters,
new high-pressure hoses which can deliver twice as much water as
previous models, a brand new electronically-controlled pump, and a
more economical and environment-friendly EURO VI engine, which will be
compatible with London's low-emission zones. In 2017, 52 initial
appliance orders are being rolled out across
As of 2016, the LFB's frontline operational fleet consists of:
* 102 Dual Pump Ladders (DPL) (plus approximately 25 used for
* 55 Pumps (P)
* 15 Fire Rescue Units (FRU) (plus 1 for training)
Urban Search and Rescue
The reserve fleet consists of:
* 45 Dual Pump Ladders * 5 Turnable / Aerial Ladder Platforms * 3 Fire Rescue Units * 1 Command Unit * 1 Operational Support Unit * 1 Hose Laying Unit * 1 Fire Investigation Unit
The programme of improvements in staffing and equipment undertaken by
the LFB since the
September 11 attacks
Architecturally, fire stations vary in age and design from Edwardian era red-brick fire houses to modern spacious blocks complete with additional specialist facilities. Early fire stations were originally built with horse-drawn appliances in mind and with traditional features such as the fireman\'s pole , used by firefighters to gain rapid access from their upstairs quarters to the fire engine garages below when summoned.
More modern fire stations, though constructed without such features,
often have more spacious accommodation and facilities for staff of
both sexes, public visitor areas such as community safety offices and
other amenities. An example of these is the new fire station in
In 2008, existing LFB facilities were deemed unsuitable to meet the
demands of modern firefighting and training. The LFB has been training
firefighters at its current Grade 2 listed building in
In response, the LFB signed a partnership contract with Babcock
International Group PLC to provide firefighter training over the
course of 25 years beginning in 2012. Babcock is also the number one
training provider to the
FIRE STATION CLOSURES
Sign in the window of Clerkenwell fire station reads "This fire station is now closed".
The creation of the Greater
The LFB has an ongoing policy of upgrading existing fire stations,
and building new stations to replace those that are no longer suitable
for the requirements of a modern-day fire service. In February 2010,
* 2014: Belsize (A42), Bow (F27),
REGIONAL CONTROL CENTRE
Main article: FiReControl
In October 2007, the Department for Communities and Local Government
announced that the location for the new regional control centre,
dedicated to the capital and part of the
FiReControl project, would be
at the Merton industrial estate in the
MAJOR OR NOTABLE INCIDENTS
The geographical area covered by the LFB along with the major transport infrastructure and the political, business and administrative bases typical of a capital city has seen the brigade involved in many significant incidents.
MAJOR INCIDENT PROCEDURE
A "major incident" is defined as any emergency that requires the implementation of special arrangements by one or more of London's emergency services and will generally include the involvement, either directly or indirectly, of large numbers of people.
Any member of any of the emergency services can initiate a major
incident. Responsibility for the rescue of persons involved lies with
the LFB. The care and transportation of casualties to hospital is the
responsibility of the
When a major incident is declared the services, along with civilian agencies, use a structural system known as gold-silver-bronze command that allows them to follow a set procedure for incident management. Put simply, gold relates to strategic control of an incident, silver to tactical command, and bronze to operational control. The term gold command can also relate to an emergency service building, mobile control unit or other base that becomes the focal point (often remotely) for the incident's management.
Additionally, a major incident can lead to the government activating its coordination facility, known as COBR .
Notable incidents, some declared "major incidents" and some in which firefighters lost their lives, where the LFB has played a significant role include:
* GRENFELL TOWER FIRE, 2017 (40 pumps)
Grenfell Tower fire
* WEMBLEY INDUSTRIAL ESTATE, 2017 (20 pumps)
Over 120 firefighters, 20 pumps and 4 aerial ladder platforms were mobilised to a large fire in industrial units in Wembley in January 2017. The blaze affected a number of two-storey units and took around 17 hours to bring under control, and days to dampen down and declare the site safe. Crews from Wembley, Northolt, Willesden, Park Royal, Stanmore and Hillingdon fire stations attended the incident.
* CAMDEN MARKET FIRE, 2014 (10 pumps)
Ten fire engines and over 70 firefighters and officers were called
to a fire at Stables Market on Chalk Farm Road, Camden , in May 2014.
A number of shops under railway arches were damaged by the blaze.
Around 600 people were evacuated from the area. Crews were first
mobilised at around 8 p.m. and the fire was under control by 10:50
p.m. Crews from Kentish Town, Euston, West Hampstead, Lambeth,
Holloway, Islington and
* VAUXHALL HELICOPTER CRASH, 2013
Nearly 150 firefighters were involved in operations following a
helicopter crash in
* DAGENHAM RECYCLING CENTRE FIRE, 2012 (40 pumps)
Over 200 firefighters attended what was described by the
commissioner as the largest fire in
* CAMDEN MARKET FIRE, 2008 (20 pumps)
Fire ravaged the stalls at the historic Camden Market in February 2008, forcing the evacuation of 450 people from the area, including 100 from their homes. Twenty fire engines and over 100 firefighters fought to bring the blaze under control within six hours and prevent any loss of life.
* CUTTY SARK FIRE, 2007 (6 pumps)
Although no lives were endangered and a major incident was not initiated, the fire at the historic tea clipper Cutty Sark _ in May 2007 became a notable incident for the widespread interest of national media and the unusual circumstances – having been caused by an industrial vacuum cleaner inadvertently left switched on by renovation workers for 48 hours. Two fire appliances and an aerial appliance arrived at the scene within six minutes of the initial call to emergency services, and the commanding officer immediately requested an additional four appliances; firefighters brought the blaze under control within an hour.
* OXFORD STREET, 2007 (30 pumps)
From 27 to 28 April 2007 London's busiest shopping area was closed
whilst more than 100 firefighters tackled a large fire in a flat above
a department store on
* BUNCEFIELD OIL TERMINAL, 2005
The UK's largest peacetime fire broke out on 11 December 2005 at the Hertfordshire Oil Storage Terminal at Buncefield. Although the major incident was attended by the LFB, its role was assisting and providing additional foam supplies to the neighbouring Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service , to the north of London, whose "ground" the incident took place in.
* 7 JULY 2005 BOMBINGS (12/12/10 pumps)
Multiple major incidents were declared across
* BETHNAL GREEN ROAD, 2004 (8 pumps)
A fire in shops and flats in
* BUCKINGHAM PALACE FIRE, 2002 (20 pumps)
Fire broke out on 2 June 2002 in the west terrace of Buckingham Palace . At its peak, 20 fire engines and 100 firefighters were on the scene, and in the course of firefighting operations four people were rescued from the roof. The Royal Family were away at the time.
* PADDINGTON TRAIN CRASH, 1999 (12 pumps)
* CANNON STREET TRAIN CRASH, 1991
Two people were killed and over 500 injured in the Cannon Street station rail crash in January 1991.
* MARCHIONESS DISASTER, 1989
Marchioness disaster of August 1989 involved a collision on the
* CLAPHAM JUNCTION TRAIN CRASH, 1988
The Clapham Junction rail crash occurred on 12 December 1988 when a busy commuter train passed a defective signal and ran into the back of a second train, derailing it into the path of an oncoming third train. Thirty-five people died and 69 others suffered serious injury.
* KING\'S CROSS FIRE, 1987
The King\'s Cross fire broke out on 18 November 1987 under a wooden
escalator leading from one of the King\'s Cross tube station platforms
to the surface. The blaze and smoke claimed 31 lives, including that
* NEW CROSS HOUSE FIRE, 1981
The infamous New Cross house fire of 18 January 1981 claimed the lives of 13 people, all aged between 14 and 22, attending a birthday party. The exact and true cause has never been established.
* DENMARK PLACE FIRE, 1980
In the early hours of 15 August 1980, a man who was earlier ejected
from an illegal drinking and gambling club in
* THE GRANARY WAREHOUSE, 1978 (35 pumps, 6 turntable ladders)
1 October 1978 saw one of London's largest post–World War II fires, at The Granary warehouse on St. Pancras Way. At the first call at 2:58 a.m., three fire engines and a turntable ladder were sent to the scene. The scale of the blaze is evidenced by the rapid development of the LFB's mobilisation: make pumps four at 3:05 a.m.; make pumps six at 3:07 a.m.; make pumps 10 at 3:12 a.m.; make pumps 15 and turntable ladders 2 at 3:19 a.m.; make turntable ladders 4 at 3:39 a.m.; make pumps 20 and turntable ladders 6 at 3:51 a.m.; make pumps 25 at 4:19 a.m.; make hose layers 2 at 4:30 a.m.; and make pumps 35 at 5:13 a.m. At 4:50 a.m., the structure suffered a major collapse, killing firefighter Stephen Neil from Barbican station, seriously injuring three others, and destroying two fire engines.
* MOORGATE TRAIN CRASH, 1975
Moorgate tube crash was a disaster on the
* WORSLEY HOTEL FIRE, 1974 (30 pumps)
Worsley Hotel fire of December 1974 was an arson attack that
killed seven people, including probationary firefighter Hamish Petit
* 1970S–1990S IRA BOMBING CAMPAIGN
During the 1970s–1990s IRA bombing campaign throughout the last
quarter of the 20th century, several major bombings were carried out
* DUDGEONS WHARF, 1969
Dudgeons Wharf on the Isle of Dogs contained a site of over 100 tanks of various capacities up to 20,000 gallons used for storing oils and spirits. A fire started when workmen were cutting up old oil tanks. The LFB was called – six pumps, a foam tender and the fireboat _ Massey Shaw _ – and while firefighters tackled the fire an oil tank exploded. Five firefighters from Millwall and Poplar stations were killed, the largest single loss of life in the LFB since the Second World War.
* BISHOPSGATE GOODS YARD, 1964 (40 pumps, 12 turntable ladders)
London's main railway goods terminal at Bishopsgate was gutted by a spectacular fire in December 1964. Within 37 minutes of the first crews arriving on scene, the scale of the blaze was so intense and widespread that 40 fire engines had been mobilised. In addition, 12 turntable ladders, two hose layers, two emergency tenders, and 235 firefighters battled the fire which killed two customs officials and destroyed hundreds of railway wagons, dozens of motor vehicles and millions of pounds worth of goods. The site remained derelict for the next 30 years until being rebuilt as Shoreditch High Street railway station .
* SMITHFIELD MARKET, 1958 (50 pumps)
Over the course of firefighting operations at London's central meat
market in January 1958, a total of 389 fire engines with more than
1,700 firefighters from 58 fire stations worked in shifts to tackle a
fire of exceptional proportions. After the initial call, the LFB
mobilised three pumps, a turntable ladder and emergency tender at 2:18
a.m. Upon arrival, a station officer and firefighter from Clerkenwell
station headed down into the basement where it was apparent a major
fire had broken out. Both became trapped in the basement cellars and
suffocated to death. Excessive heat, dense smoke and worsening
conditions meant crews had to be rotated as frequently as every 15
minutes, as firefighters suffered from severe heat exhaustion.
Twenty-four hours later, with 800 oxygen cylinders used, the fire in
the basement suddenly broke up into the first floor of the market,
with flames seeping 100 ft in the air, engulfing the entire market.
The fire, although brought under control and reduced, was not fully
extinguished for two weeks. Valuable lessons were learnt after the
Smithfield blaze, including introducing a tally system of
firefighters' locations and quantity of breathing apparatus. On the
50th anniversary of the Smithfield blaze, in 2008, the then Deputy
* COVENT GARDEN WAREHOUSE FIRE, 1954
While fighting a fire in a five-storey warehouse adjacent to Covent Garden , a station officer and firefighter, both of Clerkenwell station, were killed. Six more were hospitalised, with three requiring plastic surgery treatment.
* LONDON BLITZ
On 7 September 1940, a sub-officer at West Ham fire station
witnessed the start of the Blitz by Nazi Germany on London. He
reported that three miles of waterfront buildings had become a
continuous blaze, and ordered 500 fire engines to be mobilised. The
commander thought this an exaggeration and sent someone to investigate
the situation, who reported back that 1,000 were required. More than
300 firefighters perished in the widespread and sustained bombing
campaign, including two in a direct hit on
* COLONIAL WHARF, 1935 (60 pumps)
An eight-storey rubber warehouse in Wapping High Street burned for four days from 27 September 1935, with 60 fire engines in attendance. It was the first major incident for one of the LFB's most famous fireboats, the _ Massey Shaw _, which greatly assisted land crews, who were hampered by inaccessibility, by supplying a vast water jet to allow the land crews to regroup and prevent the fire from spreading to adjoining warehouses.
* VAUXHALL, 1918
A fire on 30 January 1918 claimed the lives of seven London
firefighters. Staff at
* HOUSES OF PARLIAMENT, 1834 (12 pumps)
Records show the 1834 Burning of Parliament was attended by 64 men in 12 fire engines.
This list is incomplete ; you can help by expanding it .
* EXERCISE UNIFIED RESPONSE , 2016
IN POPULAR CULTURE
* _LONDON\'S FIREFIGHTERS_: Edited by David C Pike and published by
Austin Macauley Publishers (ISBN 978-1-78455-541-2 ) in 2015. A
wonderfully readable, lavishly illustrated anthology of articles,
fiction and verse about the
Fire Service College
List of fire departments
* ^ http://moderngov.london-fire.gov.uk/mgconvert2pdf.aspx?id=2909
* ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ "Who we are".
* ^ Carter, Lewis (11 February 2008). "
Camden Market fire damage
\'will cost millions\'". _The Daily Telegraph_. London.
* ^ "Blaze ravages
* ^ Gray, Richard (4 November 2007). "The toll of duty". _The Daily Telegraph_. London. * ^ "Bishopsgate Goods Depot". _fireservice.co.uk_. * ^ _A_ _B_ LONDON FIRE JOURNAL. "LONDON FIRE JOURNAL". _londonfirejournal.blogspot.com_. * ^ LONDON FIRE JOURNAL. "LONDON FIRE JOURNAL". _londonfirejournal.blogspot.com_. * ^ "Exercise Unified Response". Retrieved 2016-07-18. * ^ http://www.austinmacauley.com/ * ^ http://www.maryevans.com/ * ^ _David C. Pike_, Austin Macauley Publishers Ltd, 2014 * ^ Fire Wars, Produced by Folio/Mentorn for BBC Television transmitted on 1 July 2003 & 8 July 2003 * ^ London\'s Burning: The Movie, (IMDB) * ^ "London\'s Burning" TV series, (IMDB) * ^ Fire! Produced color:#FFFC17;">
* v * t * e
Fire services in the United Kingdom and Crown Dependencies
* Avon * Bedfordshire * Berkshire * Buckinghamshire * Cambridgeshire (Peterborough ) * Cheshire * Cleveland * Cornwall * County Durham & Darlington * Cumbria * Derbyshire * Devon and Somerset * Dorset and Wiltshire * East Sussex * Essex * Gloucestershire * Greater Manchester * Hampshire * Hereford and Worcester * Hertfordshire * Humberside * Isles of Scilly * Isle of Wight * Kent * Lancashire * Leicestershire border-left-width:2px;border-left-style:solid;width:100%;padding:0px">
* Mid border-left-width:2px;border-left-style:solid;width:100%;padding:0px">
* Airport fire services
Defence Fire and Rescue Service
* Appliances (
Links: ------ /wiki/Statute /wiki/Fire_department /wiki/London /wiki/Eyre_Massey_Shaw /wiki/Fire_services_in_the_United_Kingdom