Philippines hold Olympics for firefighters

The attention of the world might be focused on the UK for London 2012, but the Philippines have held their own alternative games - the ‘Fireman Olympics’.

The video showcasing the event held in Manila, where more than 300 firefighters took part, has been a huge hit online.

Contests in the alternative Olympics included ladder climbing, hydrant carrying, fire engine racing and water bucket relays.

There were also some less directly relevant activities, including tug-of-war and a variation of rope climbing, where contestants attempt to scale a large crane and ring a bell.

The variety of contests allows the fire-tackling participants to demonstrate their physical endurance, strength and marksmanship of contestants.

The Fireman Olympics originated as a fire-prevention awareness campaign amid Manila's growing number of fire incidents in the past decades.

The event aims to promote teamwork and camaraderie within the fire-fighting service, and to increase awareness of volunteers from all over the Philippines.

Manila has the highest number of fires in the Philippines, with an average of three to five incidents reported daily.

Benjamin Silva-Netto, the event referee, said: "It’s an opportunity for our firefighters to train more and maintain their fitness throughout the year."

The visionary official added: "It would also help fire fighters around the world if they do it in their countries."

While there are no current plans to roll out the exact structure of the event to other countries just yet, fans of the Fireman Olympics need not wait another four years before the next ‘games’; the event is scheduled to be held annually.

Check out the Fireman Olympics video below.

What other take on the Olympics would you like to see? Games for the police? Paramedics?

Discover more about the Philippines in our countries guide.