International Firefighters Day
International Firefighters Day is observed next on Thursday, May 4th, 2023 (219 days from today).
International Firefighters Day (IFFD) is celebrated every year on May 4th to honor the work of fire professionals who dedicate their lives to protecting people and property.
No one can understand what it means to be a firefighter like this courageous woman did. Most of us would risk our lives for those we hold dear like family members, friends, and pets. But can you imagine risking serious injury or even death to someone you don't even know? Can you imagine walking into a burning building to rescue a stranger, knowing you might not get out?
Can you imagine climbing a tree in a burning forest only to save a defenseless animal that was so scared that it jumped down on its own? These are the things firefighters do on a daily basis and while we might consider them acts of pure heroism, for firefighters they are just part of the job. Few people deserve to be celebrated like these heroic men and women, so all make sure to celebrate International Firefighters Day in their honor!
History of International Firefighters Day
The first organized professionals with construction firefighting work lived in ancient Egypt; however, at the time, firefighters worked for private companies that provided their services only for people who can afford it. Later, in ancient Rome, Caesar Augustus revolutionized firefighting by calling for the creation of a team of firefighters, known as Vigiles that were trained, paid, and equipped by the state.
Firefighters Day was established in 1999 after five firefighters died tragically in a bushfire in Australia when the wind direction changed abruptly and engulfed them in flames. The festival is celebrated on May 4 because it is the feast day of Saint Florian and Saint Florian, who is said to be one of the first commanding firefighters of a real Roman battalion and has saved many lives, is the patron saint of firefighters.
The incident that led to the creation of this date occurred on December 2, 1998, in Linton Community, Australia. The event was so tragic that it shocked the whole world. Linton was a densely populated area in Victoria, Australia, and firefighters were at the time dealing with a large bushfire. They call for mutual aid. This led to the arrival of the Geelong West Fre Brigade to the scene. They do not know the tragedy and despair that awaits them.
Matthew Armstrong, Jason Thomas, Stuart Davidson, Chris Evans and Garry Vredeveldt all packed into one truck. They were sent to help put out the fire as part of the strike team. However, when they entered the hot area, the wind suddenly changed direction, causing the truck to engulf in flames, all 5 members were killed. It was an incredibly tragic event, and it led to the birth of a day commemorating the firefighters and all they did for us. Many other firefighters eventually died at the scene.
Symbols of International Firefighters Day
International Firefighters Day has an important symbol attached to it, and this is a blue and red ribbon. The ribbon is precisely cut to one centimeter wide and five centimeters long, with two different colors combined at the top. Blue and red were chosen by JJ Edmondson because of the color's symbolism. Blue is designed to represent water while red represents fire. Not only that, but these two colors are recognized worldwide as a symbol for emergency services. So it was decided that there is no better color choice!
Ribbons are usually worn over the fold of fabric on a shirt, i.e. lapel. However, it is not limited to a certain location. You can wear it anywhere you feel appropriate, such as another part of your shirt or cap. Many people also place them from car mirrors or windows, as well as plants in their gardens. Regardless of whether you decide to order these ribbons or not, they represent a simple yet effective way to show your support for firefighters around the world.
How to celebrate International Firefighters Day
There are so many great ways to celebrate firefighters on this day. Above all, this day is to show our appreciation for their service, risk and sacrifice, so find a way to make sure your local firefighters know you value them how tall they are! As always, the mindset is that counting and small gestures will have a lasting effect, so even bringing a cake down to the fire room is a good thing to do. You might also consider donating money to one of the many firefighter charities, some of which help firefighters who are injured in the line of duty get the medical treatment they need and return.
Other firefighter charities help retired firefighters live a comfortable life after years of putting themselves at risk for others. You can also raise awareness of the dangers brave firefighters face every day by wearing a red and blue ribbon, the colors of water and fire, respectively. There are also lots of different craft projects you can enjoy on International Firefighters Day based on that day's symbolism. Wearing a ribbon, baking a cake, or donating a few dollars to charity may not seem like particularly impressive gestures to you, but they can mean the world to those who work tirelessly for their community.
You can also use this time to educate yourself about some of the heroic actions of firefighters, whether in your area or around the world. All you need to do is do a quick Internet search and you will be able to read about some amazing firefighter hero stories. This includes heroes who risked their lives to save newborn babies from burning buildings, as well as firefighters who have been involved in high profile incidents that have occurred around the world, with the tragic Grenfell Tower fire and the Australian bushfire are two of the most recent tragedies honoring the great firefighters as well as those who tragically lost their lives.
Show the world's firefighters a little gratitude and celebrate International Firefighters Day with us!
ObservedInternational Firefighters Day has been observed annually on May 4th.
Tuesday, May 4th, 2021
Wednesday, May 4th, 2022
Thursday, May 4th, 2023
Saturday, May 4th, 2024
Sunday, May 4th, 2025