Convention of Pacific Coast Association of Fire Chiefs.

Convention of Pacific Coast Association of Fire Chiefs.

The 17th annual convention of the Pacific Coast Association of Fire Chiefs was held in Seattle September 7 to 10. There were 40 chiefs present at the opening session and the gathering throughout was a highly profitable one. Seldom does a fire convention witness such a practical demonstration of the workings of the local department as the Pacific Coast chiefs did. The $165,OOf) fire on the sixth floor of the big manufactures’ exchange building occured on the morning of the third day and was witnessed by most of the visiting chiefs. An excellent demonstration of the wafer tower was given, if Chief Bringhurst had not had it at his disposal it is likely the fire would not have been confined to the one building.

The papers and discussions of the first day bore principally on the subject of better buildings as a means of tire prevention. The paper on fire prevention was bv Fire Marshal Kellogg, of Seattle. The leading paper the second day was by Chief Bringhurst, of Seattle This paper was on “Fire Barriers and Water Distribution.” He advocated that frame buildings be built :$ ft. from the property lines and also advocated the building of fire walls. Sprinkling systems in buildings were also advocated. YV. J. Kingsley, chief of the Everett fire department. submitted a paper on “Fire Extinguishers in Dry Kilns.” Chief Thomas Davis, of Victoria, submitted a paper on “Hook and Ladder Truck Service.” In the demonstration of some of the statements in the paper Chief Davis and Chief Kingsley carried Chief Raymond, of Olympia, about the building demonstrating a new means of handling disabled firemen. Chief Schuller, of Ellensburg, submitted a paper on “hire Alarm Telephones in Small Towns.” In the discussion that followed, it was generally conceded that the telephone system was not the best in small towns, although it had worked well in some places. The electrical signal was found to be better.

‘hhe morning session of the closing day was taken up with the reading and discussion of a paper by C ity Electrician Howard Joslyn, of Seattle, on “hire Alarm Telegraph Sys“tems.” In the discussion that followed the question was whether gongs, large bells or whistles were best for alarms. Tt was generally conceded t h a t gongs were best, although some of the chiefs insisted that whistles were better. The other principal paper was by Chief H. TT. Carlisle, of Vancouver, B. C.. on the “Comparative Cost of Maintenance of Automobiles and HorseDrawn Apparatus.” It was the belief of Chief Carlisle that a motordriven piece of apparatus would be cheaper than one drawn by horses, taking a period of twenty years. In addition, he stated that the a ut m obi l e a ppa rat us carried double the amount of hose, could cover more territory in faster time and answer more alarms than the horse-drawn apparatus. The fire chiefs generally approved of motordriven apparatus except in the case of the steam fire engines which they believed should be hauled by horses.

After the committee reports at the closing session, a resolution was adopted commending the work of Chief Bringhurst and his men in lighting the Manufacturers’ Exchange building lire.

Stockton, Cal., was designated as the place of the next meeting, the date to be announced later.

The election of officers resulted in the choice of Chief Bringhurst for President. Chief M. McCann, of Stockton, was elected first vice-president; Chief A. TT. Myers, of Spokane, treasurer; Chief A. A. Symner, of Anacortes, secretary. Chief J. F.. Shrewsbury. of Long Beach, was elected vice-president for California: Chief Joseph Jones, of I.a Grande, for Oregon: Chief C. S. Ferris, of Lewiston, for Idaho; Chief R. S. Mentrum, of Anaconda, for Montana; Chief C. J. Warren, of Arlington, for Washington: Chief Thomas Davis, of Victoria, for British Columbia, and Chief James Smart, of Calgary, for Alberta.

Among those present were the following: Chief A. TI. Myers. Spokane: Chief James YVood, Renton: Chief G. Q. Stryker, Snohomish: Chief Thomas Davis, Victoria, B. C.: H. P. Wand, Vancouver, B. C.: Howard Joslyn. Seattle: Chief H. E. Smith. Roslyn; (hief J. E. Throw. Wenatchee: Chief W. H. Bush. Montesano: Chief F. C. Miller, Centralia: Chief F. TT Grabner, Raker City, Ore.: ( hief J. T. Marsh. Bellingham: Chief W. Metz. Walla Walla: Chief J. L. Vaughan, Pendleton, (fire.: G. E. Morlev. Tacoma: Chief F. H. Kelly. Wallace, Idaho: Chief George McAlevy. Tacoma: Chief James Jones. La Grande. Ore.: ex-Chief TT. Roberts, Seattle: Chief John Parkins, Nanaimo. R. C.: ex-Chief M. Fox, Baker City. Ore.: ex-Chief C. W. Hauser. North Yakima: Chief M. McCann. Stockton. Cal.: Chief V A. Sumner, Anacortes; Chief C. S. F’crris. Lewiston, Tdaho; Chief E. B. Raymond. Olympia: Chief R. S. Metistrum, Anaconda. Mont.: Chief II, D. Briggs, Eugene, Ore.; exChicf G. Kellogg, Seattle; Chief H. YV. Bringhurst, Seattle: Chief A. Reese, Cle Elum; Chief J. H. Carlisle, Vancouver, B. C; Assistant t hief C. Y. Thompson, Vancouver, B. C.; Chief J. E. Shrewsbury, Long Beach, Cal.: ex-Chief J. L. Phillips, Spokane: Mr. F. A. Wood, Seattle; thief A. M. Clifford, Pasadena, Cal.; Chief C. J. Warren. Arlington.



(Special correspondence of FIRE AND WATER.)

THE ninth annual convention of the Pacific Coast Association of Fire Chiefs was held in Tacoma, Washington, August 14, 15, 16, 17, and was an entire success in every way. The attendance was between forty and fifty, and those present came from Dawson, Yukon Terrritory, on the north, to California on the south,and eastwardly from Baker City, Ore., Wallace, Idaho, and Calgary, Alberta. The Elks’ carnival was in progress at the same time, and this not only afforded much pleasure to all, but enabled us to secure better transportation rates. The famous Canton, Ohio, band furnished music. The papers were as follows: “The appointment by the governments of the United States aud Canada of a commission to investigate means of reducing fire losses.” Former Chief Thomas Deasy, Victoria, B. C. “Benefits and advantages of modern fireproof construction,” Chief Ralph Cook, Seattle. “An appeal to the Pacific Coast Association of Fire Chiefs,” Christopher Clarke, Northampton, Mass. “Chemical engines and their advantages,” Chief David Campbell, Portland, Ore. “The fire marshal and his duties,” Fire Marshal Gardner Kellogg, Seattle, Wash. “Safe electric wiring and electric hazards endangering firemen,” Inspector W. E. Hughes, Seattle, Wash. “Reports on unusual fire hazards,” Inspector Wm. C. McDevitt, Philadelphia. “The first considerations in organizing a volunteer fire department,” Secretary H. W. Bringhurst, Seattle, Wash. “The work performed by volunteer fire departments,” Chief Chas. G. Koehier, Aberdeen, Wash. There were also six subjects taken from the Question Box and discussed.

On Thursday the members were taken out on Puget Sound to a clambake and lunch; on Friday they inspected the various Tacoma enginehouses and witnessed a splendid run: on Saturday they rode In carriages in the parade, and in the evening were guests of the city at a grand banquet in the Tacoma hotel.

There were numerous exhibits, and demonstrations were made of the Vajen-Baden head protectors, Seagrave ladders, and Eastman nozzles.

Next year’s meeting will be in Victoria, B. C. The new officers elected are as follows: President, Chief A. H. Myers, Spokane, Wash; treasurer, Chief J. H. Carlisle, Vancouver, B. C.; secretary, H. W Bringhurst, Seattle, Wash.: vicepresidents, Chief E. E. Sherwood, Whatcom, Wash ; Chief Jas. Smart, Calgary, Alberta; Chief John Parkin, Nanaimo, B. C.; Chief J. E. Buchanan, Winnipeg. Mass.; Chief Frank Lowe, Skagway, Alaska Chief Carl Mallon, Wallace, Idaho; Chief E W Walling, Missoula, Mout.; A. G. Long, Portland, Ore.; R. S. Chapmuu, San Francisco, Cal.; Chief T. W. Lillie, Nelson, B. C.; Chief Jas. Devine, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Chief Jesse poyns, Tacoma, Wash., made an admirable presiding officer, aud opened the convention by introducing Mayor Campbell, who delivered the address of welcome.

Secretary Bringhurst made his annual report, briefly stating that the receipts from all sources for the past year were $160, of which $50 came from dues and $110 from advertisements in the report of the Spokane convention.

Former Chief Deasy, of Victoria, treasurer of the association, deplored the lack of interest on the part of many who should be members of the association.

Chief Poyns in an eloquent address welcomed the members of the convention and dwelt upon the beneficent work it was designed to foster. After pointing out the evil effects of political interference in the working of a fire department, and calling upon all the members to join in the discussion of the convention without hesitation, he concluded by thanking the secretary of the association, H. W, Bringhurst, of Seattle, for his untiring efforts to promote the success of the convention. In the course of his speech, the fact that fire departments in the United States had reached the highest point of perfection was shown, but he added that the people fail to guard properly against fires.

The paper on “The fire marshal and his duties; the benefits derived therefrom,” by Fire Marshal Kellogg, Seattle, was read by the secretary, and various speakers followed in commendation of the work done by such an officer. Several expressed the hope that a State fire marshal might be appointed, as this would be a measure of great benefit to the smaller towns, which conld not afford to maintain one at their sole expense Chief Poyns alluded to the recent law enacted by the State, creating the office, and the failure to provide any compensation for the work. The speaker considered this advance, small as its effect was, would prove of benefit as the beginning of better legislation regarding fire prevention.

W. E. Hughes, electrical inspector of the Washingington Insurance association, followed with an address on “ Safe electric wiring and electrical hazard endangering firemen ” After reviewing in a concise way the rules that should govern the wiring of buildings, Mr. Hughes passed on to the consideration of the risk to firemen’s lives in dealing with electric wires. On the subject of high potential wires, Mr. Hughes spoke very strongly againBt the manner in which the Suoqualmie Power company has its wires in the cities it serves, and warned the chiefs not to attempt to cut the wires in the event of their being in the radius of a fire, but rather to telephone to the company to have the current shut off. “ If a man on the ground were handling a hose aud struck the wire with a stream of water he would be instantly kilted. There certainly should be a substation outside the city, and 3,500 volts should be the maximum for wires within the limits.” Mr. Hughes, in reply to a remark that a stream of water was said to become loo diffused at fifteen feet from the nozzle to conduct the electric current, remarked that he should like to see the mau that said it taken out to make the test himself. Mr. Hughes also touched on the dangers arising from defective telephone instalments and from open arc lights. Chief Cook, of Seattle, stated that at a fire which took place in Seattle last May. he was standing in front of the burning building when the superintendent of the Snnqualmie Power company came to him and said “ Chief, keep your men away from those wires. Don’t cut them or somebody will be killed.”

Former Chief Deasy, Victoria, B. C., then read a paper on the appointment by the government of the United States and Canada of a commission to investigate means of reducing fire losses. The speaker showed the terrible loss caused by fire in the two countries—a loss estimated at $200,000,000 a year, and pointed out the best means of reducing this amount. As the cities do not take the precautions, appeal should be made to the Federal authorities, by this means lifting the appointments to the department out of politics.

At one session a paper was read by Chief Cook, Seattle, who addressed the convention on the benefits and advantages of modern fireproof construction. Chief Deasy told how a small extra expenditure in building would be the means of saving vast sums of money, to say nothing of precious lives. He showed what a building should be like and also what they often are, citing several cases from his own experience.

In the ensuing discussion, which chiefly centered on building laws and inspection, Former Chief Deasy suggested that the members should circulate the building ordinances of their respective cities.


In his appeal to the Pacific Coast Association of Fire Chiefs, by Christopher Clarke, of Northampton, Mass., Mr. Clarke gave his opinion that any changes for the better in the present law regarding buildings could be brought about only by the fire chiefs. A unanimous vote of thanks to Mr. Clarke was passed.

Chief Campbell, Portland, read an address on chemical engines and their advantages. The speaker was enthusiastic in his praise of all such engines, and stated that the percentage of fires in Portland extinguished by them was seventy-five. The chiefs of Spokane, Seattle, Tacoma, Victoria, B. C., and Calgary, Alberta, spoke most favorably of the work done by chemical engines, most of them being responsible for ihe extinction of eighty per cent, of the fires in the respective cities. Chief Cook, of Seattle, characterized them as being “worth their weight in gold,” and former Chief Deasy said that to be without a chemical engine in active use was to be out of the race in fire protection.

The exhibition of appliances comprised a model climber fire-escape shown by former Chief Deasy, which was very favarably commented on by the members of the convention, as well as the Vajen-Baden smoke helmet shown by A. G. Long, of Portland. Other exhibits were: Cutter for electric wires; Waldron nozzle shut-off and spray; Bresnau distributing nozzle; “Midget” smoke protector; hydrant model, Waterous pattern; Holden splice ladder; flexible playpipe, aluminum mounted; rotary gong: Seagrave’s trussed ladder.

An exhibition run was given by Chief Poyns, and within two minutes and ten seconds pieces of apparatus, some from quite a considerable distance, were ou hand, ready to work. One engine company No. 5, was at the box in exactly one minute. It was a smart piece of work and reflected the highest credit on the chief aud his men.

Chief Campbell, Portland, said that the exhibition run could not have been beaten by any department. He added that Chief Poyns and the men under him deserved the highest praise. The gravest defect in the equipment, however, was the non-availability of chemical engines.

Former Chief Deasy,eulogized the department, which is full paid, but added that the city did not do enough for it, and that it was false economy to put the chemical engines out of use. The opinions of the other chiefs coincided with these, all agreeing that the exhibition was one that did the department immense credit.