About Fire Service


Brief History

Odisha Fire Service owes its origin to pre-independence era. It was in the year 1936, when Odisha became a separate state having its capital at Cuttack, the then British Police administration symbolically started Fire Service by putting some fire buckets in front of its magazine guard at Cantonment Road, Cuttack. But during the World War II, in the year 1942, when Japanese war planes started bombarding the coastal districts of Odisha, particularly in Kujanga & Paradip area of present Jagatsinghpur district, the British administration of Odisha decided to set up Fire Stations in the coastal districts.
To start with the proposal, on 1st March 1942, ten police constables with Havildar Sd. Sallimuddin under the charge of Sergeant Major Hurtson James were attached to Cantonment Police Phandi (Police out post) at Cantonment Road Cuttack for firefighting duty. This unit was provided with two Ford petrol driven trucks with inscription, "Emergency Police Force". The pay and emoluments of Sergeant Major (Fire) was fixed to Rs.40/-as per Govt. order No.1121/ARP dt.25.03.42. The Police personnel (Firemen) attached to Cantonment Phandi for firefighting were granted Fire brigade allowance of Rs.5/- per month w.e.f. 01.03.1942 vide DO. No.16 dt.01.03.1942. They were also given war allowance wef.01.09.1942. So officially Fire Service started in Odisha on 1st March 1942.

In the year 1943, Fire advisor to Govt. of India visited Odisha to find out the feasibility for expansion of Fire Services in Odisha. As per his recommendation four Fire Stations were sanctioned for Balasore, Cuttack, Puri and Berhampur. In the same year, recruitment was held for enrolment of regular Firemen for opening of these Fire Stations vide DO. No.41/1943. To begin with, twelve Firemen were recruited for opening of Puri Fire Station. Mr. Hemayat Khan of Balipatna, Jagatsinghpur was first to join as regular Fireman on 27.07.1943. His pay was fixed to Rs.15/- vide DO. No.41/1943. He was the first Fireman of Odisha Fire Service. Besides, a regular Fire officer, Mr. J.R.G. Hatchson Stainchane was posted vide office order No.243 dt. 12.08.1943. Havildar Sallimuddin who was under deputation from Police to Fire Service was promoted to the rank of Station Officer on 01.10.1943. He was the first Station Officer of Odisha Fire Service. The next man to get promotion to Station Officer was D.P. Mishra.

The Cuttack Fire Station was shifted from Cantonment Outpost to its present accommodation at Buxibazar in the year 1944. So, Cuttack Fire Station assumes the glory of being the first Fire Station of Odisha Fire Service. The other three Fire Stations at Puri, Balosore and Berhampur were made functional w.e.f. 01.04.1944 under the charge of district Superintendent of Police vide G.O. No.3360 dt.12.04.1944.

In 1950, after shifting of the capital of Odisha from Cuttack to Bhubaneswar, Fire Station at Bhubaneswar was opened. Similarly, during construction of Hirakud Dam Sambalpur Fire Station was opened inside the Reserve Police Line, Sambalpur in the year 1954. In 1955, seven Fire Stations were made functional at Aska, Sonepur, Athagarh, Jeypore, Dhenkanal, Bhadrak & Khurda. By 1963, twelve Fire Stations were already functioning in Odisha. All these Fire Stations were under administrative control of district Superintendents of Police. The power of administration was transferred to Fire Officer in order to streamline Fire Service administration, Odisha vide G.O. No.21790/P dt.10.09.1963.

After independence and departure of British officers the responsibility of administration was vested with AFO Mohindra Singh who was later promoted to the rank of Fire Officer in the year 1963.

By 1980 all District HQs and Sub-Divisional HQs of Odisha were provided with fire-fighting units. The number of Fire Stations was 75. Though the administration of F.Ss. was looked after by Fire Officer, Odisha but the personnel were governed under Police Manual Rule and Odisha Fire Service continued to function as a wing of Odisha Police.

With the enactment of Odisha Fire Service Act in 1993 Odisha Fire Service ceased to be part of the police establishment. In the aftermath of the fire disaster in a religious congregation at Baripada in 1997, the policy of the government to have Fire Stations in each Block of the State had taken momentum. Accordingly, Odisha Fire Services grew rapidly bringing the total number of sanctioned Fire Stations in Odisha to 338 as on August 2020 with almost half of the fire stations (161) being established in the decade starting with 2011.

Disaster Response

One of the oldest Fire Service organisations, Odisha Fire Service has earned a unique place in the country with the dual mandate of conventional fire-fighting and disaster response. Government of Odisha took a policy decision, post super cyclone of 1999, to develop each Fire Station in the State as a multi-hazard disaster response unit to respond in case of manmade and natural disasters in addition to its core mandate. A decade long effort to equip and train the 5000 odd personnel of 338 fire stations of the State in disaster management has brought the organisation to the forefront in disaster mitigation. Odisha Fire Service has not only contributed immensely to the disaster management during the cyclones and floods that had ravaged the State but has extended a helping hand to other States during disasters. (more)

Awareness Programmes

As part of community disaster preparedness and awareness programme, the Odisha Fire Service has conducted more than 3300 mock drills and 740 community awareness programmes since 2017.


Odisha Fire Service has the state-of-the-art training facilities at three places; the Odisha Fire and Disaster Response Academy (OFDRA), Odisha Fire and Disaster Response Institute (OFDRI) and Odisha State Watermanship and Life Guard Institute (OSWALI). Regular training and preparedness have developed the professionalism and skill among the members required for disaster response.

Fire Safety Recommendations and Certificates

One of the core responsibilities of the Fire Service is to recommend fire safety measures and issue fire safety certificates for classes of premises or occupancies those are likely to have risk of fire, namely, high rise buildings, multiplexes, malls, business establishments, industries, clinical establishments etc. Odisha Fire Service aims at delivering such services to the citizens in hassle free manner by maintaining probity and transparency as part of the priority area of the government. These services can be availed through the online portal, “Agnisham Seva”.