A Fire Department on Rails
On the first page cover of this issue of FIRE AND WATER ENGINEERNG is shown a novel method of transporting a fire department and its apparatus. It is no less than fire engines mounted on small railroad trucks and traveling on rails. This unusual plan has been adopted in many of the camps of the American Expeditionary Forces abroad, the illustration showing an installation at the Supply Camp at St. Sulpice, Gironde, France. The conformation of the camps makes this arrangement particularly advantageous, and the speeders are built to run on the standard narrow gauge track that surround the cantonments, thus enabling the firemen to respond to an alarm in any portion of the camp with the highest speed and in record time. The majority of the men composing these camp fire departments are chosen for their knowledge of fire fighting and are members of the American fire departments on leave, serving with the forces on the other side. Of course, with the demobilization and the reduction of the army to a peace basis, many of these men have now returned and resumed their duties in their respective departments, or will soon do so. But, even so, there will be others to take their places in the smaller army that it will be necessary to maintain in the occupied territory after the peace treaty has been signed. Some of the men who have received their fireman’s training in the departments of this country will, no doubt, still remain to guard the camps from the common enemy of mankind. We are indebted to the U. S. A. Signal Corps for the interesting photograph on our cover.