The Austin K2 Auxiliary Towing Vehicle was introduced in 1941 to replace numerous improvised vehicles in service with the Auxiliary Fire Service. Firemen and their equipment were carried inside and a trailer pump was towed behind. The pump could draw water from rivers or hydrants to supply the hoses.
German attacks on London and other towns in the First World War showed the importance of a well-equipped fire service to protect lives. Over 40,000 civilians are estimated to have been killed during the Battle of Britain and subsequent Blitz. This Austin K2 was built in 1944 and displays the markings of the National Fire Service, formed by the merger of the Auxiliary Fire Service and regional brigades in 1941.