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Chobham Wildfire


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Well that was a shift..Major incident ongoing, on the hottest day of the year we got a fast moving wildfire with  extreme fire behaviour , shutting two major golf courses(wentworth ladies cup ) local evacuations. Shutting tbe main line railway as it jump roads and rail. Any one who knows the area - it is huge with massive accesd issues

Its pumps and off road vehicles loads . Crews done a great job so far  well be thete for days

My sector was about 100 hectares at a guess 4 sectors in place.

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Wow, where do I start, crowning of high level trees, , multiple fuel loadings, Molinia, gorse, heather, deciduous and coniferous, at low mid and high level, Multiple wind driven fires , with wind direction changing,  Wind/fire vortexes and Slope driven fires(gains intensity) back burning, everything in aspect (no shade )Spot fires occurring in front of the multiple fire fronts,  humidity the highest so far this year.

i witnessed flame heights of anything up to 10 metres travelling at speeds that you Can’t  outrun ! So safety is paramount see laces protocol

Laces protocol

And use of wildfire prediction system...we’re well versed in this .


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I remember there being some strong words on Yammer when it kicked if up there in 2018 about relief cover and lack of welfare. Any improvement on that stage this time? 

Chobham Common is like a real life wildfire LearnPro some years


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The elephant in the room here is the ongoing difficulties  in Surrey Fire in crewing stations and appliances with numerous vehicles off the run and closed stations almost daily.

Not the best time to have a hot spell in a county like Surrey, with lots of open spaces and a higher than usual August population who are on staycations

I saw a curious command vehicle at the fire on the BBC and assumed like Cumbria, it might be a joint police/fire enterprise. Social media sources are saying it was a local SAR charity and used as Surreys wasnt available due to ow crewing levels.

Apparently the big aerial ladder which stole the show at Grenfell has been off the run for weeks due to lack of staff. But I am mindful that social media is not the best source for reliable info

Becile, am NOT asking for you to comment on the ongoing Wentworth job mate, but what is the score re Surreys operational difficulties?

Well done for your and your crews efforts mate. The footage of the fire whizzing thru the golf course on Sky Sports proved it was gunna be a tough one

And good luck to all of you this weekend wherever you are. Even a AFA run can be exhausring in this heat 👍

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@messy I won’t comment on most of it for obvious reasons...sure you understand.

I can enlighten  you on the alp though , it had a mechanical defect, nothing to do with staffing levels.

@OscarTango the rapid relief team provided (Very good )welfare as soon as they were able. In years gone by I used to remember getting into station and Making yourself some sandwiches and drinks, and going on the commons all shift - and that was 15 /20 years ago now ! Relief cover is always going to be an issue with a fire this size. 

Anyone fancy a round of golf.


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@Becile. Thank you for verifying the ALP info. I rarely believe everything I read on social media and the FB Group I saw it on (you probably know it) is light on reliable info, as its heavy on anger which rather twists their reporting. Its a real shame, as there is obviously a story to be told.

I am happy to join you for a game of extreme crazy golf. But can it wait until next week....... when its raining 😉

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You get a free game if you can actually find the hole !

Just been recalled so I guess it’s another hot sweaty shift to come

Just done a quick google maps from one end of the incident to the other it’s about 2.5 miles if you don’t believe me go from sunningdale ladies course to Wentworth across country remember to jump the roads  and railway (that’s the route )🔥🤭

Its hot out here..


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So..still going, now we’ve got strategic holding area, enhanced logistical support from National Resilience, hvp etc etc etc, going to be a long haul me thinks.

Best bit so far, geezer showed up in his ice cream van...even more amusing when he played his little tune.

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Its a shame as there is a story to be told. But the author(s) are not the best at fact checking or using facts over emotion.  Writing posts on a Word document to allow it to be spollchicked wouldn't be a bad idea.

But Surrey do seem to be in crisis and using mutual aid far more than they were. The fact that (LFB) Hayes were the third pump to a building collapse in Windsor 13 miles away as Royal Berks were helping out in Surrey is cause for concern.

Back on the subject - I hope progress has been made on scene today Becile. What's the bet the job is declared over an hours before the thunderstorms arrive ;)

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Surrey FRS aren’t the only service who consistently need OB assistance. I’ve heard Bucks are just as bad if not worse.

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Spent all night there last night as oic, never went below 25* it was showing 32* driving away this morning, we’ve also got one of our other commons going now (Whitmore)

I am a tad jaded.


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Becile I saw on Facebook that it took 22 minutes for an appliance to arrive at a house struck by lightning in Surrey? Is this accurate? 

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I am not entirely sure that we should be asking @Becile this sort of question to be honest. As a serving employee and manager he has to tow the party line and we should respect that.

Surrey have got problems - of that there's no debate. The truth is out there in between SFRS corporate comms and the equally unreliable social media reports.

This fire call appears to have come during a batch of storm related calls. Video of the M25 flooding shows how bad it was

Its not unreasonable for localised heavy storms to exhaust local resources rapidly.  I went on a run to an AFA during a storm 16 miles from Paddington to RAF Uxbridge. Nothing surprising there

I am suspicious of the mischief makers as much as I am the decision makers, but let's not draw Becile into a public debate 👍👍


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