International Firefighters Day (IFFD) is annually observed across the globe on 4th May to create awareness about the significant role of firefighters in ensuring the safety of the people and property and to recognise and honour the sacrifices of the firefighters.
- The day also pays respect to those firefighters who lost their lives in the line of duty.
- The day also marks the feast day of St Florian (May 4), the patron saint of firefighters, chimney sweeps, and brewers.
Symbol of IFFD:
Red and Blue ribbon (two colours fused on top) is the significant symbol of the IFFD, the red colour symbolises the element of Fire and the blue symbolises the element of water.
i.International Firefighters Day was initiated to honour the deaths of 5 firefighters who died in the line of duty in the 1998 Wildfire at Linton, Victoria, Australia.
ii.On 4th January 1999, Australian firefighter JJ Edmondson sent out the proposal to observe 4th May as International Firefighters Day.
iii.May 4th was chosen to coincide with the feast day of St Florian.
iv.The first-ever International Firefighters Day was observed on 4th May 1999.
Observance of IFFD:
i.IFFD is usually marked on the first Sunday of May at noon local time, during which the fire sirens are rung for 30 seconds followed by a minute’s silence in the memory of all firefighters who lost their lives on duty.
ii.This is known as the “Sound Off”.
India’s National Fire Service Day:
Annually India observes the National Fire Service Day on 14th April to create awareness about the importance of fire service and to pay homage to the firefighters who sacrificed their lives in the line of duty.