Annual Report of the Hornell Fire Department
The report of the Hornell, N. Y., fire department for 1915, submitted to the Hoard of Public Safety by Chief Joseph M. Hederman, states that the department answered 77 calls, five of which proved to be false alarms, as compared with 85 calls and two false alarms in 1914. Of the 72 fires, 40 occured in frame structures, 18 in joisted brick, and five in brick veneered structures, the remainder occurring outside buildings, such as automobiles, manhole, rubbish and grass and woods fires. In but 13 fires was it necessary to use water lines, and in these operations 14,000 feet of hose was used; 36 fires were stopped with chemical, the remainder of the fires were either put out upon the arrival of the department or had been practically extinguished with buckets of water. Of the tires occurring within buildings, 54 were confined to the room or the actual point of origin, seven were confined to the building in which they originated, three extended to other buildings before they were extinguished. However, the losses upon these exposure fires were small, the largest exposure loss being $134.70. Total insurance paid upon losses was $22,667.79. Total property loss, $22,667.79. Total insurance carried upon property at stake, $240,000. The largest loss of the year was the Clark-Alien fire, 1439 Main street, March 19, 1915, which caused a loss of $7,930.19. The department also responded to four fires outside the city limits, three of which were beyond any water protection and upon which there was a gross insurance loss of $2,966.50. Relative to causes of fires the report shows that the largest number, twelve, was caused by overheated smoke flues, and the next largest, eleven, by flying match heads. Swinging gas brackets caused five, and five are attributed to spontaneous combustion.