Company History


WATERAX has a long and exciting history, the origin of the company being the Watson Jack & Co. which was founded in 1898 by Montreal native John Colquhoun Watson Jack. In 1925, he introduced a powerful 200 psi portable fire pump called the WAJAX (an acronym of Watson Jack’s name). After Watson Jack & Co. and its F.H. Hopkins subsidiary were acquired by B.J. Coghlin & Co. Ltd. in 1954, the operations of the two newly acquired businesses were merged to form a single subsidiary. This subsidiary was titled Watson Jack Hopkins Ltd. until 1959 when it was renamed Wajax Equipment Ltd.

In 1964, Wajax Ltd. acquired Pacific Marine’s fire division and changed its name to Pacific Pumpers Inc. This move solidified Wajax Ltd.’s position as North America’s leading forest fire protection products manufacturer. That year, the company also introduced the MARK-3® brand, which rapidly became the standard wildland portable fire pump used by forestry agencies around the world.


In the early 80’s Pacific Pumpers changed its name to Wajax-Pacific Fire Equipment Inc. In the ensuing years the company expanded beyond its wildland fire-control client base to become an industry-leading manufacturer of firefighting equipment for the US industrial and marine markets as well. In 1983, Wajax Ltd. set up its Fire Control Division, which combined Wajax-Pacific Fire Equipment Inc. and Montreal based Wajax Manufacturing. Events heated up during the coming years and in 1995, Wildfire Fire Equipment Inc., a newly formed company, purchased Wajax Ltd.’s Fire Control Division.

Today, the WATERAX brand captures the powerful meaning and essence of the historical names Watson Jack & Co., Wajax and Wildfire. WATERAX is truly going back to its roots by doing what its founders did really well and aligning ourselves with the original purpose of the company. This new brand identity better communicates the core nature of our manufacturing activities and our distinctive portable pump products brand.

WATERAX products are characterized by multi-stage centrifugal pump ends designed to move water while generating high-pressure to meet the difficult requirements of wildland firefighting and other applications when you need to move water over long distances and elevation.