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Biggest “Make-Up”


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Just out of curiosity and to hopefully get a new topic flowing, what is the biggest make up you’ve attended? 

Personally it was a ‘make pumps 20’ for me, but I see in some of the metropolitan brigades this can be a regular occurrence.

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Was first in attendance at a field that our JO made 10 within half hour of us being there few weeks back. Relief pump on a 16 couple years back. 
We rarely go to 10 here, maybe have a handful 8’s over the year. Lots of 4’s and fair 6’s mostly.

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The trouble is that in London, an 8 pump fire 25 years ago may now be a 12. So comparing historic jobs is tricky

I attended a 35 pump fire where a collaping wall killed a FF, and a few 30 pump fires/bombs. But as memorable as they were, the best jobs were usual 4 pumpers or smaller.

You have the start, stop and end of the job, you can get to know the sufferer during the FI and tidy up and back to the station for cakes and congratulations all round.


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I went to a plastics factory this week that went to 20 pumps and 2 HPs. It kicked off with 5 trucks ( so went to warn the gym bunnies as it wasnt far from us ) We went on standby on the Mp10, got halfway there and got pinged on the Mp15. Shortly after we got there is was increased to 20 but mainly for crew rotation as it was about 34 degrees outside. Finally got home 4 hours after i was due to finish ( and went back there on the first night reliefs the next night )

Photo taken from 6 miles away; we were mobilised about 3 minutes after it was taken


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On 14/08/2020 at 16:28, BurtMacklin said:

Wanstead flats went to 40 a few years ago that’s my biggest. 

At the same time there was a 15 pump (may have been bigger, don’t remember exactly) grass fire going on just over the Essex border that was also attended by 3 LFB machines and a couple of other 4s in the area iirc.  Was a very busy and hot afternoon.

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12 hours ago, BurtMacklin said:

......... one of Steve’s last jobs before retirement I think. 

I wonder if the Met were informed as its a bit suspicious don't you think? 40PF just before retirement????

Plus I think have seen photos of him there almost celebrating with the former Chief in a very unprofessional way 

Does anyone know the number for Crimestoppers? :)

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40 pump fire @ Grenfell Tower which was effectively a 60 pump fire as no machines were relieved in the morning when the 20 pump relief turned up. In fact some crews only just made it back to station in time to start their second night shift. 

Also went on the 40pf @ Swinley Forest but only as a relief from LFB. 

Had numerous 10s 15s and 20s but definitely feel that, unless it’s a rip roaring high rise or basement job, the best jobs are the 2 - 4 pump house fires when first in as a BA crew. 

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21 hours ago, Vema11 said:

HIGHRISE IMMEDIATE RESIDENTS EVACUATION. Came in after Grenfell. If the OIC sends this message, control change stay put advice to leave the building. The OIC would send it if the fire isn’t behaving as it should. For example rapid fire spread, jumping floors etc. 

And that has been superceded by a IMMEDIATE BUILDING EVACUATION message. Same thing different name.

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7 hours ago, Noddy said:

Loads of 10’s and 15’s, a few 20’s and a 25 for me.  We had a 40 pumper a few years ago but I didn’t go to that. 

Was that jayplas?

In only 18 months I've had a 10 and 15. But given we are a 1 appliance with specials we don't go to the big ones often and both of those were on standby. It does seem LFB make up more because why not when you have the resources?

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in London it’s good practice to have 20% resilience of resources at an incident, that way when you order a make up you don’t have a gap in operations waiting for them to arrive as you are using some of them to refill your reserve, that’s the idea anyway. 

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LFB have a much more structured and consistent approach to make ups and resourcing and it works. Yes it’s different to the county brigades. It’s not just about the number of PA’s attending, it’s the other resources that come on automatically at 4 6 8 10 12 and 15. 

We, and everyone including government want to compare LFB to the counties of England. Surely it’s more relevant to make a comparison to FDNY, Tokyo, Paris or any other global city? 

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On 14/08/2020 at 16:28, BurtMacklin said:

Wanstead flats went to 40 a few years ago that’s my biggest. 

I went to that on Bodgit! 🤣

Edit. I see it was a much later one. Wanstead Flats seems to be a regular. 



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4 hours ago, StandPipe said:

Out of interest, what did LFB use the helicopter for?

Fanning the flames of a derelict hotel fire where he delivered salvage gear, blowing hot charcoal from a BBQ at a station open day, and turning up uninvited at a grass job over the border where he dumped water and fish on the fire he collected from a fish farm. Oh, lets not forget when he landed at Heathrow without permission and ATC didn't know he was there

The helicopter was on trial by a chief officer with an ego bigger than an aircraft carrier. It was a cock up and he was retired early to spend more time with his family 🤣🤣

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That was mentioned on station a couple of weeks ago. One of  the quietest stations in the service is the only one that didnt go to it at any point. yet they called in trucks from OB to go to the job ( which is rarer that rocking horse poo in West Mids, even more so when they’re going that deep into the services area ) and even more to standby. The standby truck for Walsall had travelled 43 miles from Leek

Im told the catering was top notch on the fireground, due to a chilled food warehouse over the road from the job giving food away as they couldnt get the delivery trucks out, i wouldnt turn down sushi delivered to the truck ( as it was a summer job )

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I was on rota thankfully.  Give me a decent house fire over a big pile of recycling plastic any day.  As a firefighter the novelty of big make ups soon wore off (depending on the job of course with high rise fires being an exception I suppose). Crawling round in a BA set, running up ladders etc... is what it’s all about.  Manning a pump or a jet for hours on end isn’t all that exciting.

However! As an FI, at big jobs I’m a free spirit, get to see the whole job from every angle and generally wander round taking it all in.... far better 👍👍👍

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