Education in Gasoline Vapor Dangers
The peril of gasoline handling was vividly brought out in the description of the tank truck explosion in a recent issue. Too much stress cannot be laid upon the necessity for education along this line of both officers and men of fire departments. They perhaps more than any other individuals are exposed to dangers from this source. Fires in garages, in automobiles, in storage stations, in cleaning establishments, and in many other places where gasoline is used in considerable quantities are always accompanied by the peril of the deadly vapor pocketing in some portion of the building or in the auto tank. This vapor only awaits a favoring spark to explode with the most terrible results to those whom the flames sear or who are brought into contact with the blast.
The utmost precaution is necessary in the handling of the dangerous commodity by the citizen and with him such precaution is always possible. But with the fire-fighter the case is often different. He must often take his life in his hands and enter buildings to fight fire where he knows that at any moment the deadly gasoline fumes may leap out at him in a sheet of flame. Chief Dougherty, in this week’s issue, appeals for better judgment and more care by the fireman in exposing himself to this danger, where such exposure is not necessary and can he avoided. Courage and recklessness of danger are two very different qualities, and as the chief points out, no firemen—he he officer or private—is called upon to expose himself to unnecessary danger. This is an instance where education will play a most important part.