‘Firefighter Olympics’ come to ExCeL for free family fun

PUBLISHED: 13:00 02 October 2012

You’ve been to the Olympic Games, now see the world’s firefighters compete in a free event in Custom House later this month.

The World Rescue Challenge is being held at ExCeL London from Thursday October 18 to Saturday October 20 for families

Usually, the annual event pits the best of the brigades in the UK against one another but, for the first time ever, international firefighters will descend on Newham with crews from New Zealand, South Africa, Ireland, and Spain already confirmed to attend.

Billed as the ‘firefighter Olympics’, the challenges are designed to show off what other skills crews excel in when they are not extinguishing fires.

Activities on all days will include rope challenges where firefighters will rescue people from from cranes; extrication challenges with actors pulled out of crashed cars made to look like they have been involved in a serious accident with make up and prosthetics; urban search and rescue demonstrations with firefighters rescuing people from rubble; and a spectacular parachutist crash landing in the Docks with rescue teams on speedboats.

Community Safety World, a popular attraction with families, will return with their main feature of a life-size hazard house where children can talk to firefighters, learn more about safety and be introduced to the brigade’s special fire dogs.

But it’s not all about blazes and smoke as families can also have fun practising penalty shoot outs with West Ham United, watch a performance from rapping firefighters, and see what happens when you throw water on a deep fat fryer.

World Rescue Challenge will be held at ExCeL London from Thursday October 18 to Saturday October 20.

For more information and free tickets, visit

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