Dock Fire at Portland

Dock Fire at Portland

Fire, the cause of which is a mystery, completely destroyed the Oceanic dock, a quarter of a mile northwest of the O. W. R. & N. shops, at Portland, Ore., recently, entailing a loss estimated at $150,000. It was the third disastrous fire on the East Side waterfront this year, all of them north of the Broadway bridge. When discovered it was burning in a big pile of empty grain sacks in the south end of the dock. Ship’s officers were summoned immediately, but the dock was locked and they could not get in to fight the flames. The alarm was sent in at 4.44 a. m. The flames spread rapidly, and in a short time the whole dock, 850 feet long and 100 feet deep, was enveloped completely. It took only an hour and a half for the fire to completely destroy the dock. 2,500 tons of wheat and 5,000 tons of barely were piled on the dock when the fire started. Some of it was saved. A number of freight cars on the siding back of the dock caught fire, but these were quickly hauled away and the flames extinguished. The steamer Maria, which was moored at the dock, was slightly damaged, by the flames. The fire department at first could do practically nothing. On its arrival it found the gates locked, and for some time could not get in. There were no hydrants within a radius of more than a quarter of a mile. The fircboat David Campbell had several streams on the flames, but the fire already had gained too much headway, and the chief efforts of the firemen was to keep the fire from spreading. Nothing but the wooden piers of the dock were left standing. The first big waterfront fire this year was the destruction on March 12 of Columbia dock No. 2 and Montgomery dock No. 1. The second was the burning of the Northwest Door Company’s plant and the Irving dock in June. In this fire two men lost their lives.

Dock Fire at Portland.

Dock Fire at Portland.

Early on the morning of December 4 a fire broke out in one of the eight docks of the Grand Trunk railway at Portland, Me., and was not under control till two were destroyed. It was thought the flames, which had communicated to the Dominion line steamer Cornishman, along side, had been completely controled. They broke out again, however, with renewed vigor, and, before they were subdued, caused a damage estimated at about $200,000 to the vessel and her cargo. The Grand Trunk officials estimate the loss on the docks, together with the contents of the burned sheds, to be at least $250,ax> and, perhaps, $300,000making the total loss caused by the fire approximately $500,000. The fire on board the Cornishman was almost entirely confined to the No. 2 and No. 3 holds, in which practically all the cargo was ruined. At night the fire was still smouldering, but was thought to he thoroughly under control, and the steamer was in no danger of sinking. The Cornishman was to have sailed for Liverpool the next morning. The vessel and cargo are fully insured, while the dock losses arc covered by blanket insurance carried by the Grand Trunk company. Two huge elevators owned by the Grand Trunk Elevator company, worth, with their contents, millions, were saved by their iron sheathing, and the Thompson line steamer Corvona and the Whaleback tramp steamer Carsey, which were berthed at the docks, were warped into the stream without damage.