We create some of the finest, creative and unique Firefighter
recognition awards and Firefighter Gifts as well as EMS, Law
Enforcement and RCMP Awards, and Canadian Forces awards - all custom
made at great prices.
Firefighting is a highly technical skill and firefighters have many
years of training in general firefighting and other specialities
such as rescue services and emergency medical services. Firefighters
are often the “certified first responders” to people in life
threatening conditions and disasters.
In their role Firefighters provide essential services to their
communities such as:
• Fire fighting
• Emergency medical services
• Alleviating Hazardous materials (spills, leaks, etc.)
• Vehicle rescue and rescuing people from vehicles
• Search and rescue including cold water and swift water rescue,
confined space rescue
• Disaster response
• Fire risk assessment
• Wilderness fire suppression
Fire departments provide fire prevention services which includes
public education at community events about fire safety in homes and
in schools. This information is distributed by conducting
presentations, distributing safety brochures, providing news
articles, writing public safety announcements and setting up
displays in well visited areas.
They also ensure that commercial dwellings such as hotels, offices,
factories and schools are equipped with adequate fire precautions to
ensure that people safely evacuate unharmed in the event of a fire.
They conduct building inspections to make sure that buildings are up
to the current building fire codes as well as working with
builders and city planners.
The Merriam-Webster's Dictionary says that the English word
"firefighter" has been used since 1903. In recent years it has
become the preferred term, replacing the older term "fireman", as
many women work as firefighters, and also because the term "fireman"
can have other meanings, such as someone who sets fires – the
opposite of the firefighting role.
Most communities have a combination of paid firefighters and
volunteer firefighters to put out fires, so as to prevent loss of
life, to protect property and the environment.
The first known firefighters were created by the Romans. Under
Augustus in 31 BC the term “bucket brigade” was born. A strong force
of 500 men, called Vigilies would patrol ancient Rome, acting as a
police patrol, and passing buckets of water to put out fires. They
also used pumps, as well as poles, hooks and even ballistae (a type
of siege weapon) to tear down buildings in advance of the flames.
Early cities of Europe suffered many catastrophic fires and it
wasn’t until the Great Fire of London in 1666 that private insurance
companies formed fire brigades to fight fires for their insurers and
only their own! Firefighting made huge advancements when the first
manual pump fire engine was invented in the 17th century in Germany.
The first fire engine was patented in London in March 1691 and was
described as the engine being pumped by a team of men. The fire
engine in America was patented in 1725. It was pulled as a cart to
the fire, manned by teams of men and could deliver up to 160 gallons
of water per minute at up to 120 feet.
In 1648 the first wardens of America were appointed by the New
Amsterdam governor Peter Stuyvesant. Their jobs were to inspect all
chimneys and fine any violators of the rules. Later there were 8
citizens appointed to the “Rattle Watch” who patrolled the streets
at night carrying large wooden rattles. If a fire was seen the men
spun the rattles and directed others to form bucket brigades. In
1736 Benjamin Franklin formed the Union Fire Company in
America did not have any government run fire departments until
around the time of the American Civil War. Before this time
insurance companies had their own paid fire brigades competing with
each other to be the first responders. The first known female fire
fighter was Molly Williams, an African American slave, belonging to
Benjamin Aymar who was allied with the Oceanus Engine Company #11 in
1818 in New York City.
Vancouver’s Fire and Rescue history started later. May 28, 1886,
Vancouver's first fire department was formed. Just 2 weeks later on
June 13, 1886, Vancouver burned to the ground. The fire fighting
steam pump City council had ordered from the Ronald Co. of Ontario
hadn't arrived yet!
History of Vancouver
More on the history of Fire Brigades in Canada can be found at
Canadian Fire Fighter Museum
. Another great collection is at the
Vancouver Fire Fighters Historical Society
The first organised municipal fire brigade in the world was formed
in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1824. London followed in 1832 with the
London Fire Engine Establishment and in 1853 the
Cincinnati, Ohio Fire Department
became the first full time paid
professional fire department in the USA and the first to use steam
The image of the “Dalmatian” dog on the fire engine is familiar to
us. These dogs were used because of their protective nature and
loyalty. Dalmatians and horses have shared barns and hunts for
centuries so when fire-engines was horse drawn nearly every fire
house had its resident Dalmatian to help direct the horses, keep
them company and to guard the fire house. Dalmatians were a
favourite because of their size, friendly nature, ability to train
and care for themselves.
Call us today to find out more about our unique firefighting awards,
trophies and plaques: 1-855-545-6518