Buffalo Fifth Alarm Causes $150,000 Loss

Buffalo Fifth Alarm Causes $150,000 Loss

COVER STORY

FORTY LINES of 2 1/2-inch or greater hose were required to control a fivealarm fire on April 8, in the century-old Barnum Building in downtown Buffalo, N. Y. Fire Commissioner Robert J. Zahm, Jr., told FIRE ENGINEERING that the three upper floors of the five-story brick and frame structure occupied by the Lockwood Stationery were fully involved when first-alarm companies pulled in. Flames were leaping across Main Street on the front and across Washington Street at the rear. The building was heavily stocked with office furniture and supplies and exposures included five-story buildings of similar construction and age to the north and south.

The first alarm at 9:08 pan., for Phantom Box 2125, Washington and Swan, was struck by dispatchers in the Ellicott Street Fire Alarm Central Office following numerous telephone calls. Captain Powers, acting first battalion chief, ordered a second alarm at 9:12 p.m., and followed with the third a minute later.

Commissioner Zahm radioed the fourth and fifth alarms at 9:27 and 9:33. He also ordered two special calls which brought out Hose Tender 2 and three civilian defense auxiliary pumpers. Fifteen engines, seven ladder companies, the BFD Snorkel and other apparatus responded. The Snorkel and aerial ladders saw heavy duty at the blaze.

Commissioner Zahm estimated loss at $100,000 to the building and $150,000 to contents. Cause was undetermined. Three fire fighters were hurt and treated at the scene. A fourth, Junior Captain Mutchler of Engine 37 suffered a knee injury and was hospitalized.

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