SINGAPORE - A Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) officer has collected more than 80 fire helmets from various countries over 33 years.
Senior Warrant Officer Junaidi Rowden has been collecting firefighting memorabilia for decades, a Facebook post by the SCDF said on Wednesday (Feb 10). The post has attracted almost 2,400 likes and has been shared more than 600 times.
Starting with patches and badges from the fire services of other countries, the collection now encompasses fire engine models and fire helmets. Some helmets are from countries like Germany, France, Austria and the United States, as well as vintage ones from the Singapore Fire Brigade.
SWO Junaidi, who is the Regimental Sergeant Major of the 1st SCDF Division, keeps the helmets in a custom-made glass cabinet in his living room.
Some were gifts. He said in the Facebook post: "Once, a man walked in to Central Fire Station where I was working many years ago. I showed him around and learned that he was a German firefighter. We soon became good friends.
"Many months after he left, I received a big parcel from him one day. I was surprised to find a fire helmet in it!"
He works on restoring the helmets too. One photo showed a bench grinder that had been modified to fit a buffing wheel, while another showed before-and-after pictures of a vintage fire helmet from France.