AMERICAN FIRE APPLIANCES AT BERLIN.
FEW exhibits will be sent by American inventors and manufacturers of fire protective appliances to the International exhibition of fire protection and fire prevention in Berlin next June and July. The Pan-American exposition at Buffalo had already engaged the attention of these classes at home, and the invitation from Germany, which was sent only in December last, was too short to allow of preparations being made for the double event. It was also felt when the fact was taken into consideration, that as the conditions under which fires take place in Europe are so different, from those in the United States as to render the majority of American fire-protective appliances unnecessary, it would hardly pay to go to the expense of sending them over to Europe for exhibition only, without any likelihood of many being sold. Americans might learn something, certainly; but they would teach more. The words of William Paul Gebhard, the American representative on the Berlin committee on this subject will bear quoting. He says:
Americans are decidedly ahead of every other nation in the matter of fire-protection, which takes in fire appliances, brigade work, and extinguishing facilities. But in fire prevention (the most important), which includes all the hazards involved in building construction, and in the maintenance of structures, I think we have scarcely reached the standard of some European cities. Of course, the exhibition will not cover the fire hazard of very tall buildings. They have not that contingency to contend with abroad, for the skyscraper is pre-eminently an American institution, and the hazards peculiar to buildings 300 feet high are seldom encountered outside of the United States.