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Alingsås-Vårgårda FRS chose Cobra ahead of other systems

Alingsås-Vårgårda Fire and Rescue Service recently made the decision to equip all first responders on all station with cutting extinguishers. In early November we met Fire Chief Börje Lindgren and took the opportunity to ask why they chose the Cobra ahead of other systems.

In 2012, three incidents at Alingsås–Vårgårda FRS were reported to the Swedish Work Environment Authority (AMV). At a meeting with AMV they asked, "What is dangerous in your work and how can you avoid it"? Part of the answer was to avoid working with BA in the way they did before. We realized that we couldn´t continue “taking chances” with BA anymore, says Börje Lindgren Fire Chief Officer at Alingsås-Vårgårda FRS.

A group working on technical developments with the Fire & Rescue Service had for a long time been evaluating different firefighting systems e.g CAFS. They listed various uses for each system and although the list for CAFS was comprehensive, the Cobra had one outstanding benefit that couldn´t be obtained by any other system; firefighter safety.

"Life is always paramount, and we must make sure our personnel are as safe as possible, says Börje Lindgren. Since we found the firefighters´ safety was a serious problem, we could not be satisfied with only one cutting extinguisher. Of course the Cobra must be on all first responders at all stations.”

The first Cobra will be delivered to Alingsås in early January 2014, and the plan is to install the next one by the end of the year. Effective implementation of cobra in the organization is very important and all firefighters and team leaders will be trained in Cobra methods and tactics.


  • Alingsås-Vårgårda FRS has 3 stations, 1 full-time station and 2 part-time stations
  • In the area there are 50 000 inhabitants
  • 700-800 emergency responses every year
  • Alingsås has many wooden houses and farms build in the 19th century. A fire in one of these houses could be hard to stop and demands loads of water with traditional firefighting.