March 31, 2004
Of Cellphones and Fire

Glorious sunshine in London - feels like Summer is here already. A fire engine screams in the opposite direction to the bus on Wembley High Road. Every second counts: at the moment that I snapped the picture - the firefighter in the front passenger seat of the truck (right hand side of the truck) is pulling on his bright orange firefighting suit. Also notice the chap at the cash-machine ATM - completely oblivious to it all.

Fire Engine on emergency at Wembley High Road

And on a related note - this evening - I happened to be driving back home from a day’s business in the Buckinghamshire countryside - and got stuck in a traffic queue in the suburbs of North West London. And a mobile phone mast caught my eye. (I have a strange habit of looking out for these things.) It was mounted atop a fire station training “tower”. These towers are used to help train firefighters how to tackle multi-storey blazes - and are really set alight - burning flames etc. for training sessions. It amazed me that there was a cellular network radio mast on the top of one of these structures.

Mobile Phone Mast on top of fire station training tower

I subsequently spent the rest of the traffic queuing time wondering whether it was a “2G” mast - or a “3G” mast …

Posted by jag at March 31, 2004 11:15 PM

Hey, for all you know, that mite also be a part of the simulation for training.

Posted by: sat on April 2, 2004 04:20 AM

Most of the time the towers are just used for drying hoses.… Not a lot of people know that.

Posted by: Nigel on April 2, 2004 10:26 AM

Well - it turns out that mobile phone masts on top of fire-station training towers is quite common. Apparently, they’re ideal siting points - and it’s easier to get planning permission - plus the fire training involves the use of gas jet flames that don’t incur any risk to the transmission equipment on top. Amazing eh?

Posted by: Jag on April 2, 2004 07:44 PM
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