Fire Damages Tacoma Packing Plant
Fire which started in the wool and hair drying room of Carstens’ packing plant on the East side tide flats, at Tacoma, Wash., was confined by the efficient work of Assistant Chief Otto Schlegel to part of the plant. The plant covers five acres and the building in which the fire occurred is a three-story wooden structure, ten years old, and had partition walls of lumber, one board thick. The fire started from an overheated wool and hair dryer and was discovered by workmen in the early afternoon. The alarm was given by telephone. 285 persons were employed on the premises but no lives were lost and no one was injured. When Assistant Chief Schlegel arrived, the fire had already spread to the main building and was burning fiercely. The inaccessibility of the place made the firemen’s task difficult. Despite difficulties Assistant Chief Schlegel, with his seventy-five men, quickly had sixteen streams on the fire and by skilful work extinguished the fire in one and a half hours. Three engine companies, 3 hose companies and 2 aerial ladders were in service. One of the engines was a GorhamScagrave motor 1,000 gallon pumping engine which did excellent work and one steamer was tractor drawn. Eight hydrants were available and were 150 feet apart. The hydrant pressure was 110 pounds and of the streams thrown five were hydrant and eleven were engine streams. 12,500 feet of cotton, rubber lined hose was in use. Three Eastman deluge sets were used. The building was valued at $50,000 and the contents, hides, wool, hair and tallow, was valued at $200,000. Assistant Chief Schlegel received much credit for keeping the losses down to $34,000 on building and $15,000 on contents.