Guinness World Records held by the fire service
From the longest journey to the longest fire hose chain, these are some of the most impressive Guinness World Records in the fire service
By FireRescue1 Staff
Firefighters perform impressive tasks every day, but some of them just happen to be documented. Do you think you can beat any of these fire and EMS-related Guinness World Records?
Fastest mile in firefighting gear
Missoula, Montana firefighter Andy Drobeck finished the Missoula Mile race in 6 minutes 8.46 seconds in full firefighting gear, including boots. Drobeck, 35, was joined by another firefighter and three police officers and beat the previous record by more than 34 seconds.
Fastest woman to run marathon in full firefighter gear
Firefighter Erin Fairhead completed the London Marathon in 4:09:32 in 2016, beating the previous record of 5:38. Her participation in the marathon raised money for the Fire Fighters Charity. “It was an amazing atmosphere and everyone was really encouraging, I don’t think a minute went past without someone patting me on the back and saying well done,” she said.
Fastest jet-powered fire truck
The jet-powered Hawaiian Eagle is a red 1940 Ford powered by two Rolls Royce Bristol Viper engines with 6,000 hp per engine. The truck, owned by Shannen Seydel in Navarre, Florida, reached a speed of 407 mph.
Most vertical distance down a firefighter’s pole in one hour
A group of firefighters who previously held the record worked to get it back in 2016 –and succeeded. The Green Watch Hove firefighters from the United Kingdom were beaten out in 2014 by a rival station who achieved 20,301.84 feet in one hour. On March 19, 2016, the Green Watch Hove firefighters made a comeback at a charity event with 26,125.9843 feet.
Fastest time to dress a firefighter
German firefighters Nicolas Fox and Michael Gerber achieved the world record on June 27, 2013 by getting dressed in firefighting gear in 27.08 seconds on the show “Wir Holen Den Rekord Nach Deutschland,” which means “We Bring the Record to Germany.” The show features candidates trying to beat already-existing world records.
Longest journey by fire engine
Stephen Moore started his 31,663-mile-long journey in Greenwich, UK on July 18, 2010 and finished in the same place on April 10, 2011. Moore and his team of 25 firefighters, who took turns joining him, traveled around the world. He drove through five continents and 28 countries in nine months while raising money for three different charities.
Largest chain of fire hoses
The South Tyrole Fire Brigades from Italy extinguishing the existing world record on May 31, 2014 with their fire hose chain that spanned 39.27 miles, almost 30 miles longer than the previous record of 10.1 miles.
Largest firefighting aircraft
Global SuperTanker Services converted a Boeing 747-400 jumbo jet into an aerial firefighting goliath. The plane can carry over 19,600 gallons of water or fire retardant a distance of 3,977 miles. In August, the SuperTanker fought its first fire in the U.S. after the U.S. Forest Service finally allowed it to fly.
Heaviest vehicle pulled over 100 feet by a pair (male)
Two brothers either made their strongman father proud or jealous when they broke his record. Jacob and Matthew Fast pulled three fire engines with a total weight of 190,000 pounds over 100 feet, breaking the Guinness Record previously held by their father, Reverend Kevin Fast. The feat took place at an event to raise money for Alzheimer’s charities.
Largest aerial firefighting force
Established in 1931, the Avialesookhrana (or Aerial Forest Protection Service) of Russia currently employs 4,000 smokejumpers who rappel from helicopters or planes into firegrounds. The force protects a forested area of 2 billion acres and 11 time zones with 340 bases.
Longest fire service bucket chain
Over 5,000 people helped the Voluntary Fire Department of Pfullingen, Germany transport 229.62 gallons of water through a chain that stretched 15,058 feet, 2 inches.
Fastest firefighting attack, Class A
The Ebersegg Fire Brigade in Austria completed the Fire Fighting Attack Class A competition in 28.5, beating 80 other teams at CTIF’s Fire Fighting Olympics that take place every four years. This wasn’t the first time the fire brigade won the competition; they won in 1989 as well.
Worst death toll in a single building fire disaster
On May 25, 1845, The Theatre in Canton, China burned down and 1,670 people died in a fire that broke out during a performance.
Worst damage from a single fire
The fire that occurred after the San Francisco earthquake on April 18, 1906 destroyed an estimated $350 million in damage at the time, which is equivalent to almost $9 billion today.
Largest collection of fire helmets
Gert Souer from the Netherlands has 838 fire helmets in his attic. The son and grandson of firefighters, Souer has been collecting the helmets since he got a 1976 London Fire Brigade helmet in 1976. He has picked up new helmets from around the world ever since, and his family said they always know a trip to a fire station will happen when they go on vacation.
Tullahoma (Tennessee) Firefighter Brandon Berridge was named the world’s tallest firefighter in October 2020, measuring in at 6 feet and 11.17 inches. Berridge said there are advantages and disadvantages to being nearly 7 feet tall as a firefighter; confined spaces can be a challenge, but he doesn’t always need a ladder to install smoke alarms or scout out issues in higher areas. Berridge has served with his department since 2016, and his nickname at the firehouse is “Shorty.”