Capetown, South Africa, Fire Report

Capetown, South Africa, Fire Report

Chief Officer Mitchell, reporting upon the work of the Capetown firemen during the 12 months ended June 30 last, deals with 156 calls for fires, or supposed fires, and 254 ambulance calls. The fire calls were received on 127 days of the year, the largest number on any one day being four. Twenty-three calls were registered in March, and only eight each in June and July. The value of property attacked by fire in the city was ,£658,563, and the loss £4,351. At 25 fires hydrants were used; only one fire required the service of engines, and the heaviest loss did not reach £1,500. The fire calls included 20 false alarms (9 malicious), 9 bush fires, 16 chimney fires, and 17 out-district fires. The causes of fires are given under 31 headings. Lights thrown down, 16, and lights in contact, 16, lead. Ten fires were of incendiary or suspicious origin, and in 11 cases the cause was not ascertained. Forty-four of the fires were in dwelling houses, 22 in shops and warehouses, 16 in the open, 18 on government property, 13 in factories and workshops, 1 each in hotel and theater, 3 in cinematograph theaters, and 1 in a stable. The brigade comprises 6 officers, 1 motor mechanic. 3 engineers and 29 firemen. Men are paid from 45s. to 55s. per week. During the year 17 men resigned, 7 were dismissed and 24 appointed after probation. Appliances include four steamers (two self-propelled), one patrol motor, seven fire escapes and six extension ladders. The brigade cost for maintenance last year £12,011; receipts, including charges for services, inspection fees, sale of plant and government contribution, totalled to £3,321.

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