History of fire trucks

Lights, sirens and cascades of water, integral parts of the modern fire engine, tend to obscure the real role of this type of vehicle serving to save lives. For children and adults, the fire engine in action is a more exciting sight, surpassing its emergency service and police counterparts. Today, the common sight at the sight of a fire engine is that a fire has started somewhere. As you might expect, there were no motorized fire trucks until the truck itself was invented. Nevertheless, some of their features have been in use for some time.

Very early fire trucks, were water pumps on wheels. They were designed to come to the aid of the firefighters of those days, the so-called “bucket brigades.” This was back in the 1700s when the British built pumps and used them to fight fires in Europe and also the United States.

The first power units meant that these pumps, whether they were manual or steam, consisted of people dragging the pump. When the men dragged the pump themselves they moved slowly and when they got to the scene, the firefighters were often too tired to do anything. Fortunately, in most cases, the fires went out before they even got there, so there was almost nothing left for them to do.

By the late 1800s, the introduction of paid firefighting services made it possible to maintain places for horses to be used in large part to carry fire pumps. This improved the response time of fire brigades, but it still did not solve the fire-transportation problems. People would literally run to the fire even though the pump was already there they were losing a lot of energy before they got to it. The introduction of human steps solved this problem.

Further developments in firefighting technology made life much more difficult for horses. The increased weight of fire trucks proved the use of horses as inefficient as humans got there again faster. Often after a mile, the speed of travel was drastically reduced. A new means of rapid delivery was required.