FIRE DEPARTMENT NEWS OF THE WEEK
The fire department of St. Louis, Mo., has been increased by 30 men.
E. L. Wentworth was elected chief of the Coudersport, Pa., fire department.
The firemen of Somerville, Mass., are now having one day off in every six.
Everett, Mass., has increased the pay of call men from $75 to $125 a year.
The permanent relief fund of the Urbana, Ill., fire department has been organized with $1,000 in the treasury.
J. W. Sharp, the new chief of the Ashland, Wis., fire department, is said to be busy on some reforms he intends to inaugurate.
O. K. Stegall, former chief of the Huntsville, Ala., fire department, has taken up the duties of that position temporarily, following the death of Chief Guscio.
The new 75-foot truck and the two new engines which the city of Lancaster, Pa., recently purchased from the American-La France Fire Engine Company, of Elmira, N. Y., were tested and gave complete satisfaction.
The citizens of Wilkesbarre, Pa., as well as Chief Joseph Schuler, are proud of the fine showing made by the lire department at the annual inspection by the mayor and councilmen. The department is considered to be better equipped than at any time since its organization.
The Youngstown, O., council has given all numbers of the fire department an increase of
$5 a month. I his will make the pay of the men $1,020 a year. The chief receives $2,000, assistant chief $1,320. marshals $1,200, and assistant marshals $1,080.
Eight old firemen of the Buffalo, N. Y., department, have gone out on pensions. The members who were pensioned have each seen more than 25 years’ continuous service in the ranks and in many of the cases the retirement was made by request.
Engine Company No. 171, of the Ridgewood section of Brooklyn, is proud of its fine new hose wagon, which was made in the shops of the Seagrave Company and weighs, when fully equipped about three tons. It has a capacity for about 1,100 feet of hose and is provided with life-saving apparatus.
The records of Chief C. E. Toslor make a fine showing with reference to fires in Astoria, Ore., during the year 1909. The total loss within the city’s limits representing a radius of over two miles front its center, amounted to $2,300, and this included one loss of $1,500, which was beyond fire protection. The department answered 85 calls.
Judge Scanlon, of Chicago, decided that the medical and physical tests annually made of members of the fire and police departments by the retiring hoard are illegal and has ousted the hoard. The members of the civil service commission were also found guilty of violating the law and fined and were forbidden to hold further physical tests except for promotional purposes.
A press report states that this year’s fire losses in Cincinnati are what is termed “a fair loss.” In other words, the total destruction in 1909 compares very favorably with the records for the previous 12 months when the aggregate amounted to $074,755. There is a possibility of this year’s losses being slightly in excess of the latter amount.
The fire losses for the week, ending January 8, will make a total of nearly $3,500,000, a considerable bill for that time. The fires are smaller and more numerous than usual, only four being set down for $200,000 each, and one in Milwaukee at $250,000. Should this rating continue during the year, the total loss will not exceed that of 1909; in fact there is every reason to expect that it will show a substantial falling off, provided no great conflagration occurs.
Frank H. Turner, of the Somerville, Mass., Veteran Firemen’s Association has compiled a mass of figures concerning the fire loss in the city of Boston. He states that the average loss for the 80 years, from 1829 to 1909, for every minute during the years mentioned was as follows, not including the great conflagration of 1872: 1829 to 1839, 18.4 cents per minute; 1839 to 1849, 33 cents; 1849 to 1859, 75 cents; 1859 to 1869, $1.12; 1869 to 1879, $1.96: 1879 to 1889, $1,915; 1889 to 1899. 66 cents; 1899 to 1909, $3.77. The average loss for every minute during the SO years was $1.7114. The sum total of loss for the time was within a few dollars of $72,000,000 or $900,000 annually.