FIRE AID attends UKRO National Challenge in Derbyshire

Thu 31, Oct, 2019

FIRE AID recently returned from a visit to Derby where our member UKRO hosted their annual National Challenge in partnership with Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service. The two-day event saw more than 600 of the UK’s most skilled fire fighters compete in staged rope rescue, water rescue, vehicle rescue and urban search and rescue contests. Senior officers from across the UK attended the event showing fantastic support for their competing teams.

The challenge replicates real-life scenarios, requiring teams to respond within tight time frames to world-class technical, medical and command standards whilst constantly being assessed by UKRO and World Rescue Organisation (WRO) assessors. The assessors come from around the United Kingdom to provide their expert experience and advice to assess competing teams.

This year the event took place at Derbyshire Fire and Rescue services new joint training centre. On the second day the event was open to the public and attracted over 2,000 visitors. The challenge offered a wide range of activities, which raise awareness of the importance of post-crash response and the varied role of fire fighters. It was great to see so many children on school trips at the event gaining a better understanding of road safety, but in a fun and interactive environment.

This year a new extrication team was crowned winner; Essex Fire and Rescue Service took the crown from long-term reigning champions the South Wales, Bridgend team. We are pleased to that one of our supporting services, London Fire Brigade won both the USAR and Rope Rescue challenges. For the full results see the UKRO website:

UKRO Chair, CFO Neil Odin said of the event:

It has been quite an adventure over the last week, with so much hard work and planning put into the Derbyshire event. The effort that the staff have put in to make the event successful has shone though. Your efforts really do make a difference, and as I reflect on how far the UK Fire and Rescue Service have come in technical rescue and trauma care, it is great to see the highest standards that UKRO have aimed for during that journey.

Next years challenge will be hosted by Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, see for more details when available.