The St Mungo Fireboat


The famous Glasgow Fireboat, The “St. Mungo” was a powerful fire fighting boat which saw service on the Clyde from its launch in 1959 through to it being defined as surplus to requirements on the forming of Strathclyde Fire Brigade in 1975.
St Mungo Fireboat (17)It was built by Messrs Hugh McLean & Sons of Renfrew.

The main propelling machinery for the vessel consisted of two 160 B.H.P, 8-Cylinder Diesel Engines. These ran at a maximum of 900 revolutions per minute. and were supplied by Messrs. Gleniffer Engines Ltd. of Glasgow. These mighty engines were capable of powering the St. Mungo through the water at a service speed of 9 knots.

The main pumping machinery which was supplied by Messrs. Merryweather & Sons Ltd of London consisted of two – 3000 gallons per minute – 4 Stage Turbine Pumps which were powered by Ruston Paxman diesel engines each of 12 cylinders and developing 400 B.H.P at 1,000 revolutions per minute.

Water is drawn from the river by two intakes on the bottom of the boat on both port and starboard sides. These intakes were constructed to allow them to be flushed with high pressure water in order to prevent the build up of mud or other debris choking the grills.

Water is discharged from the pumps via six hand-gear operated fire-fighting monitors, two being on the foredeck immediately in front of the Wheelhouse and four situated on the firefighting platform located immediately behind the Wheelhouse.

Water can also be discharged via normal fire fighting hose from four 5-way delivery heads, situated on the port and starboard sides of the vessel both fore and aft.

Adding the capability to fight oil fires, the vessel was fitted with an auxiliary 27 Horse-Power “Lister-Blackstone” diesel engine which powered a 4 kilowatt generator and was also coupled to a general service fire pump which supplied water to Foam Generators.

Fuel to run the diesel engines was stored under the Deck-houses in two 500 gallon tanks.

From her berth at Glasgow’s Marine Station The “St. Mungo” attended many many fires on the river clyde during its operational life with one of the most devastating being of course The Cheapside St. Disaster in 1960.

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Museum
and Heritage Centre
The Old Fire Station Dalrymple Street
PA15 1LY


Registered Scottish Charity (SC043929)