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Smithfield Market Fire Only 12 Pumps?

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Hi all,

I was reading an article online about the 1958 smithfield market fire and noted that despite its sheer size it was only ever listed as a 12 pump fire.  The article stated that it was more like 25 and that it was common practice for extra appliances not to be counted but just considered as "an extra resource"

Does anyone know how long this practice went on for? Also, why did it happen? 

I understand SubOs and SOs not wanting to make it past 4 because they want to deal with jobs themselves (there's still a few who maintain this practice) but at what point did LFB, and the rest of the nation, decide that if you had 25 fire engines at a job you actually declared it a 25pf?

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I think it still does to some degree happen these days, I've only ever known it to be a LFB thing though.

Often seen MP10 jobs with a 6 pump immediate relief but then these 6 never actually do relieve anyone for example.

Someone more in the know might be able to add more its always just been a LFB thing to me.

Smithfield went to around a MP20 with an AFS pump there.  There are some documents in the Metropolitan archives that have the original fire report in but there is a register of make up fires between 40's and 60's and probably later that lists some of these if you are really interested according to some notes I have on the job.  Of the 15 stations listed on that job over half of them have closed!

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On 24/01/2021 at 17:35, Rory-495 said:

but at what point did LFB, and the rest of the nation, decide that if you had 25 fire engines at a job you actually declared it a 25pf?

Are they all getting to work, if so, it should be declared as such.

So if a relief comes in and they get to work for a significant amount of time before relieving machines, it should be declared a ‘whatever’ pump fire.

3 days before Grenfell, I went on an immediate 10 pump relief to a very complex 15pf in Golders Green. @Steve tweeted that evening it was one of the most complex fires in his 31yrs but hardly anybody talks about it as we fought Grenfell 3 nights later.

But, the point was that the 10 pumps got to work, with the couple FRU’s that came on and no other machines were released for at least 2hrs. This should have been declared a 25PF, my crew had worn twice before relieving Holloways ladder.....

10PF1.jpeg  10PF2.jpeg

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