FIRE DEPARTMENT OF ATLANTA, GA.
IN the thirteenth report of the fire department of Atlanta. Ga., Chief Joyner states that during the past year 401 alarms—the same as in 1896—were answered. The total amount of property at risk was $812,217 more than in the previous year; but the fire loss was only $95.217—$108,575 less than in 1896. For the past three years the fire loss has been over 200 000 each year, so that the loss for 1898 is more than 100 per cent, less than it has been in four years. This is the best record the department has made up to the present, and one of which Chief Joyner and his men have every right to be proud. An appropriation of $112,000 is asked for the maintenance of the department during the current year — this will not take into account whatever additions and improvements are called for. Among these are a water tower, for the protection of the business part of Augusta, the equipment of a station which is called for in the Third ward, and another—nearly as absolutely necessary— in the Fifth ward, the removal of station No. 3, to another location nearer the centre of the city, the purchase of another steam fire engine and 2,000 feet of hose, and an appropriation for the perfecting of the fire alarm system which is in very bad shape. Chief Joyner recommends putting in a storage battery at once. During 1897 chemical company No. 2, and hose company No. 8 were put into service. The city is now divided into three fire districts, each of which is in charge of an assistant chief. There are now in the department three hook and ladder trucks, three steamers, eight hose wagons, and two chemical engines. Tbe report recommends laying down large mains in the business part of the city—not less than twelve incKes. The large thirty-six inch main should be extended through that portion of Atlanta where many high buildings have been, or are being constructed. To reach the top stories of the structures will need an enormous amount of pressure for which reason either the water supply must be increased, or more engines purchased in order to afford the proper protection. In the business portion of the city, also, the overhead electric wires should be placed underground, as they cause much trouble to the department in case of a fire. As to the personnel of the department, the report itself would show what Chief Joyner is—if his reputation as a master in the science of fire fighting had not already been established. And while it speaks for him, he, on his part, thus speaks of his officers and men;
During the past year several fires have occurred that have tested the courage and fidelity of every member of the fire department, and to say that none failed in their duty would be superfluous. Their good behavior, promptness, neatness of appearance, and fidelity to duty have been a source of pleasure to me. In looking over the work accomplished by the department the past year I cannot help feeling proud of the good that has been accomplished and am filled with gratitude towards the men who have so nobly assisted in making such a record. I cannot close this report without expressing to them the deep feeling of gratitude and high esteem in which each member is held by myself.
Chief Joyner has likewise praises the good work done by Mr. B. Walker, superintendent of the fire alarm system, Mr. S. E. Cordon, lineman, Mr. Macon C. Sharp, fire inspector, and Mr. F. A. PPtman the building inspector. He adds that quite a number of fires have been prevented by the improved building laws and the close attention to buildings by the inspector and his assistant.