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HomeNews10,000 litre water bowser added to fleet in Hertfordshire

10,000 litre water bowser added to fleet in Hertfordshire

Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service added a 10,000-litre water bowser to its fleet in response to a number of wildfires that started amid record-breaking temperatures, according to a new report.

During a single day in the summer of 2022 crews in Hertfordshire dealt with three field fires – in Rushden, Hemel Hempstead and Codicote – as well as a combine harvester fire, in Buntingford.

Those incidents – which required crews from 30 fire appliances – were among the unprecedented rise in incidents, that prompted the service to declare a ‘major incident’.

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According to the new Hertfordshire Community Protection Directorate’s annual performance report, it’s in response to that major incident that the service has now added a water bowser to its fleet.

The bowser allows fire fighters to access large amounts of water at incidents where supply may be limited – holding as much water as four traditional fire engines.

The report states: “The use of the bowser ensures that on incidents where water is scarce fewer appliances need to attend to bring water to the scene.

“Additionally, less personnel are needed to bring water to the ground, ensuring that they are free to respond to other incidents in the area if needed.”

According to the report, the bowser has been available to crews in Hertfordshire since September (2023) – and used on 26 occasions.

The annual report also highlights the service’s response to a fire at the Baldock Industrial Estate in July last year – two months before the bowser was available.

The “significant” blaze spread across 43 business units, containing a range of hazardous materials and compressed gas.

And, says the report, members of the National Farmers Union used farming equipment to bring large volumes of water to fire fighters at the scene.

The Hertfordshire Community Protection Directorate’s annual performance report was reported to a meeting of the county council’s public health and community safety cabinet panel on Wednesday (June 26).

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