CHICAGO COMMITTEE ON FIRE ALARMS SIZES UP NEW YORK CITY’S SYSTEM
Delegation from the Lake City Is Guest of Commissioner Dorman in Tour of New York’s Fire Alarm System To Visit Other Cities
THE City of Chicago, Ill., which has about $6,000,000 to spend on a modern fire alarm plant, sent its aldermen and police officials who are members of the Committee on Gas, Oil and Electricity to visit some of the metropolitan cities of the East last week, to make a survey of the police and fire telegraph systems with a view to reporting to Mayor Thompson their findings.
Alderman Jacob M. Arvey, chairman of the committee told the writer that Chicago intends to increase its number of fire alarm boxes from 2,600 to 13,000 and therefore has adopted a slogan—“Run a Block.”
Some of the cities included in the itinerary were in addition to New York, the cities of Boston, Montreal, Toronto, Detroit and others. The Aldermen made their first stop in New York. In addition to Alderman Arvey, were Deputy Fire Commissioner Edward A. Maloney, Deputy Eire Chief Michael J. Corrigan. Electrical Superintendent N. Banks Cregier, City Clerk Patrick Sheridan Smith, and Chief of Eire Alarm Telegraph James P. Crowley.
Fire Commissioner John J. Dorman met the delegation at Fire Headquarters and Superintendent Michael R. Brennan of the New York Police Telegraph Bureau met them at Police Headquarters. Commissioner Dorman in greeting the delegation told the members that New York City has a most modern fire alarm plant, that there are 6,200 fire alarm boxes in this city. 13,200 miles of underground wires and 1,862 miles of aerial wires, that the fire alarm plant in the five boroughs of the greater city represents an outlay of $4,087,894, that there are 1,030 fire alarm box circuits, that the fire alarm service requires an annual payroll of $600,000, for 237 employees and that the New York system is so planned that it can be enlarged when necessary to three times its present capacity.
After visiting the Elizabeth street police station and the central police telegraph bureau, the Chicagoans lunched at the Bankers’ Club, as the guests of Honorary Deputy Fire Chief W. W. Cohen. From there they went to the fire alarm central station in Central Park.
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Chicago Fire Alarm Committee in New York
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In the afternoon, the aldermanic committee visited the Bronx Central fire alarm telegraph office in Bronx park and after that the unfinished fire alarm central station in Forest Park, Queens, which Commissioner Dorman said would be ready for service by next Spring.
Alderman Arvey explained to Fire Commissioner Dorman that Chicago with a population of three and one-half millions has only 2,600 fire alarm boxes, and that Mayor Thompson wants the most modern fire and police telegraph plant possible installed to the extent of at least 13,000 fire alarm boxes. He said the Chicago central fire alarm station was in a small corner of the City Hall and that it is proposed to isolate it, as the New York central stations are now isolated, so as to protect it from adjacent hazards. The technical and engineering phases of the New York fire alarm system were explained to the committee by Chief Valentine Fendrich, in charge of fire alarm service in this city.
In thanking Commissioner Dorman for the elaborate arrangements which were made for transporting the members of the committee, Alderman Arvey said: “We of Chicago have always looked upon New York as our big brother in the east. You have always received us with open arms and we have always found here a sympathy, a cordiality and a hospitality which made us feel quite at home. We feel certain that we shall receive the most useful knowledge and information here, and to say we thank you does not nearly tell you just how grateful we are.”