Map of London fire engine callouts

Posted to Maps  |  Tags: ,  |  Nathan Yau

Using data from the London Fire Brigade, James Cheshire mapped 144,000 incidents in London.

This map shows the geography of fire engine callouts across London between January and September 2011. Each of the 144,000 or so lines represents a fire engine (pump) attending an incident (rounded to the nearest 100m) and they have been coloured according to the broad type of incident attended. These incident types have been further broken down in the bar chart on the bottom right. False alarms (in blue), for example, can be malicious (fortunately these are fairly rare), genuine or triggered by an automatic fire alarm (AFA). As the map shows, false alarms – thanks I guess to AFAs in office buildings – seem most common in central London.

It looks a lot like a sky of fireworks in this view. I bet a map for each category might help flesh out different patterns.


  • r.e. spondent June 5, 2013 at 6:44 am

    It would be nice to figure out a way to overlay this callout map on top of a population density map. It would answer the question of is X area having more callouts because of firehazards or because of there are just more people there.

  • Sam Rodgers June 5, 2013 at 11:24 pm

    The lines joining the station to the fire really confuse things. the only piece of information that it is easy to take away from this is the position of the station. Because the lines are uniform width the density will vary as the inverse square of the distance from the station. Ditching the lines and color coding the points by the fire station might work better.


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