FIRE DEPARTMENT REPORTS

FIRE DEPARTMENT REPORTS

Franklin, Pa.

The amount of the fire loss in Franklin, Pa., in 1915, according to a report made by Chief Frank D. Grimm, was $51,498.35. During the year there was received a total of 41 alarms (3 of these alarms were outside of the city) of the total loss from fire, the loss on buildings was $16,749.60, and on contents, $34,748.75. The total insurance carried on involved property was $139,050. The total value of property endangered by fire was $387,325. Insurance paid on losses was $10,305.55. During the year there was laid and used, 0,650 feet of 2J3-inch hose, 1,000 feet of chemical hose and 100 feet ¾-inch hose; used 3 tanks of chemicals (280 gallons), 15 hand chemicals (15 gallons). Thirteen fires were extinguished with chemicals, eleven with water and one with chemicals and water. During the year the motor truck traveled 497.2 miles; cost of maintenance was $77.42; the upkeep of the horse apparatus was $320.59. The cost of horses for reserve apparatus was $104.

Chief Frank D. Grimm, Franklin, Pa.

Palo Alto, Cal.

The report of Chief George B. Crome, of Palo Alto, Cal., for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1915, shows there were nineteen fires and the loss on buildings amounted to $1,500 and on contents to $500. The number of hydrants was 150 and the number of alarm boxes, 22. The report states there is in service at the present time one Seagrave 60 H. P. motor combination chemical and hose wagon, carrying two 30-gallon chemical tanks, two extra charges. 250 feet of At chemical hose, 1,050 feet 8pS-inch double jacket, rubber-lined, cotton hose, two 3-gallon hand chemical extinguishers, 30-foot extension ladder and other apparatus. Seven portable hand chemical extinguishers, three 5-gallon and four 3-gallon, Underwriter type. One two-wheeled Stempl hand chemical engine, 60 gallons, with one extra charge. One four-wheel truck carrying 40foot Pirsch extension ladder. Scaling and roof ladder, pull down hooks, pike poles, etc., 3 portable hand chemical extinguishers. One two-wheel hose cart, roller-bearing wheels, carrying 400 feet 2pi-inch double jacket, rubber-lined, cotton hose. Two four-wheel hose wagons each carrying 600 feet 2pi-inch double jacket, rubber-lined, cotton hose, axes and one 3-gallon portable hand chemical extinguisher. The apparatus is housed in five stations.

Memphis, Tenn.

The report of Chief John E. McFadden, of Memphis, Tenn., shows that he had a rather busy year but that the total loss is comparatively small when the property involved is considered and the size of the city to be protected. The report shows a total of 1,370 alarms was responded to by the department. Of this number 44 were false alarms and 24 were outside the city limits. There were 747 fires in brick and frame buildings; 587 confined to the place of origin, 48 spread to adjoining property, and six spread beyond the adjoining buildings. Eight alarms for accidents, or emergency calls, were responded to by the department. These included the collapse of buildings, flooding of the Manassas Street subway, ammonia pipes bursting in ice and ice cream factories, and an automobile accident last summer at Second Street and Greenlaw Avenue when a woman was killed and others in the party injured. During the year the firemen laid 289,340 feet of two and onehalf-inch hose, or nearly 56 miles. The number of engine streams used in fighting fires was 257, and 150 fires were extinguished by the use of chemical streams, using 9,745 gallons of chemicals. The advantage of the motor apparatus is indicated by the work done by these pieces of equipment. The No. 12 auto pumper on Lamar Boulevard traveled 1.169.7 miles, No. 11 auto pumper traveled 745 miles, and the auto truck covered 442.8 miles. Chief McFadden is proud of the record of the department, unequalled by many cities in the country much larger than Memphis. The following tabic of property loss and insurance reflects the effciency of the department:

Chief John E. McFadden, Memphis, Tenn.

Total value of property involved.$2,416,465.20

Total property loss . 424,899.78

Total insurance on property carried . 2,359,449.25

Total insurance loss . 306,455.35 In this connection the report states that the Memphis insurance patrol rendered the department great assistance in helping to keep down losses.

Houston, Tex.

The fact that the insurance key rate in Houston. Tex., had been reduced from 22 to 21 cents in the past few months and predicting that an additional reduction of perhaps 2 cents would be granted with the installation of two additional motor pumping engines, to be delivered shortly, were among the leading features of the annual report of Fire Commissioner H. A. Halverton and Fire Chief Seibert, of that city, recently submitted to Mayor Ben Campbell. Such a reduction, said the commissioner, would mean an annual seeing to policy holders of between $50,000 and $75,000. In addition, fire losses in Houston in the past three years have been within the limit requirements of a 15 per cent, reduction in insurance and Commissioner Halverton hopes that as a result of a report to the state insurance commission that an additional reduction will also be granted. Among the recommendations of the commissioner and chief is the location of a fireboat on the ship channel, in order to furnish ample protection to the long stretch of water front. Warehouses, factories, cotton compresses and sheds, a large packing plant and the city’s dock facilities at the turning basin, about 6 miles from the city proper, where new industries are continually locating, need fire protection of this nature, which can be furnished by a fireboat equipped at an expense estimated at not more than $30,000. Chief Seibert asks for two more motor pumping engines, additional motor apparatus in the way of combinations, tractors for the water tower, aerial truck and other heavy horse-drawn apparatus, and also for the installation of a modern high pressure water system at the foot of Main street, in the heart of the business district. In addition two autos for the two assistant chiefs are shown to be a necessity, also a drill tower and training school equipment for proper instruction of members of the department. The personnel of the department, from the chief on down, is highly praised by the commissioner.

Vicksburg, Miss.

The twelfth annual report of the Vicksburg, Miss., fire department, for the year ending December 31, 1915, contains a recommendation by Chief J. W. Wilks, that 1,500 feet, of 2J4-inch cotton rubber lined hose and 200 feet of rubber chemical hose be purchased. Th report gives the following figures: Numbe of large fires, 42; number of small fires, 112 number of false alarms, 13; number out o reach of department, 5; number chimneys 43 number grass, trash, etc., 35; number ’stil alarms, 40; number fires confined to building of origin, 36; number fires extended to ad joining building, 4; number fires extended be yond adjoining buildings, 2; number feet o hose used, 38,700; number feet of ladders used 1,880; number gallons of chemicals used, 918 number hours worked, 175. The total ’valu of the property (buildings and contents) a risk was $817,850 and the total insurance wa $475,950. The total loss was $96,217, bein.: $60,382 on buildings, and $35,985 on contents

Chief J. W. Wilks, Vicksburg, Miss.

FIRE DEPARTMENT REPORTS

1

FIRE DEPARTMENT REPORTS

South Bend, Ind.

A most favorable report comes from South Bend. It shows an increase in the number of fires in 1915 over that of 1914. Figures up until Dec. 14, show 383 fires up to that time. Those for 1914 show a total of 382 fires for the year. There was a total loss of $48,137 on property in 1915, compared with almost twice that sum in 1914.

New Britain, Conn.

The report of Chief Robert M. Dame, of New Britain, Conn., for 1915 shows a small loss, the per capita figure being as low as HO cents. During the year there were 188 alarms, the largest number the department has ever had in one year. The total loss was only $32,069. March had the highest fiugre, $24,081, and July the lowest, $322. The people of New Britain, which is a large manufacturing town, are to be congratulated on the work of the department and its efficient chief.

Park City, Tenn.

The report of Chief R. B. Newman, of Park City, Tenn., for 1915 showed that during the year 81 runs were made, with a total loss of less than $800, only two fires occurring in which the loss was more than $25, and to extinguish which water was used. Chief Newman recommends placing his department on a full pay basis, as a means of increasing the efficiency of the department, and the purchase of an additional motor combination chemical and hose wagon to answer second alarms.

Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

Chief Hochreiter, of Wilkes-Barre, Pa., reports that the number of fires during 1915, was 970 with a total loss of $74,614.69, or $12,4.13.69 more than during the previous year. Many important changes made the last year probably one of the most important in the department’s history. The changes included the establishment of a full paid system, motorization of apparatus, installation of a silent alarm system and the erection of a firemen’s drill tower.

Bayonne, N. J.

The total fire loss for the city of Bayonne, N. J., for 1913, is reported as $135,118.31, an increase of $90,701.16 over 1914. The highest monthly loss was in January, 1915, during which month the plant of the Precious Woods Handling Company was destroyed and a large amount of valuable material was burned. During the year the total number of alarms received’ was 343, a decrease from 1914 of 79, Chief Davis had the captains of the several companies make regular inspections of the cellars of business houses and tenements and all rubbish was removed. During the year 1,500 inspections were made. The manual force of the department is 67, comprising chief, assistant chief, superintendent of alarms, eight captains, seven lieutenants, six engineers, two tillerrncn, 14 drivers, 10 laddertnen and 17 hosemen. The department consists of five steamer companies and two truck companies.

Utica, N Y.

The report of Chief D. J, Sullivan, for the year 1615. gives the fire loss $121,862.34 and the amount of insurance carried on the property, $2,743,178.74. which is a remarkably good showing for so large a city as Utica. The manual force of the department consists of 121 men, including the superintendent of alarm fire telegraph, a lineman and a chauffeur. Besides the chief there are three duputy chiefs. 13 captains, 13 lieutenants, 12 engineers and 76 drivers and firemen. There were received during the year 351 alarms and the actual number of fires was 285. There were 34 unnecessary alarms, 24 false alarms, while the alarms were received as follows: 153 by telegraph. 154 by telephone, 37 were verbal and 7 visible. The total number of gallons of chemical used during the year was 4,408 and of water 920,000 gallons. The largest fire was in the Utica Gas & Electric Co.’s plant where the loss was $23,208.82. This was caused by an overheated clutch. The greatest loss occurred in 1906 when the total was $466,916.54. The greatest number of alarms in one year was 1914 when the department responded to 387 alarms. The equipment of the department consists ot a chief’s motor car, two deputies’ wagons, one American-La France quick hoisting motor truck, 75-foot extension; one American-La France city service truck, one Dcdrick aerial truck, with 55-foot extension, one Seagrave city service truck, one American-La France motor combination chemical and hose, one Seagrave motor combination chemical and hose, two American-La France motor combination pumps and hose, one double tank, 50 gallons each, straight chemical; four double tank, combination chemical and hose, one Metropolitan first size steam fire engine, one Metropolitan second size steam fire engine, one La France second size steam fire engine, one Clapp & Jones second size steam fire engine, one straight hose wagon. Chief Sullivan recommends the purchase of two motor runabouts for deputy chiefs, 4,000 feet of hose and 500 feet of chemical hose and suggests that more motor apparatus be purchased to bring the department up to greater efficiency.

Gary, Ind.

The report of the Gary, Ind., fire department, for 1915, made by Chief Wilfrid Grant and presented to the mayor and „oard of safety, gives the fire loss for the year as $45,293.46, showing a large reduction from 1914, when the loss was $84,085.67. The value of the property endangered by fire during 1915, was $1,023,075.13. During the past year the department responded to 270 runs, as against 296 in 1914. Ninety-six of these fires were extinguished with chemicals, 7,158 gallons being used. The apparatus traveled 1,947 miles to these fires and used 2,054 gallons of gasoline. The upkeep expense of the F’irc truck at No. 1 station, including gasoline, lubricating oil. grease and repairs, was $71.43 and the highest amount paid out on a machine was $212.79, the Chemical at No, 2. This docs not include the chief’s car, however, as it responds to every fire. Nearly $4,000 appropriated for the department for 1915 was returned to the general fund. For salaries, $58,560 was appropriated for 1915; $57,000 for 1914. The amount paid out in 1915 for salaries was $56,580.76 and in 1914 $54,410.99. Reverting to the general fund from the salary appropriation was $1,979.24. The miscellaneous appropriation for 1915 was $9,850, of which $7,869.11 was expended. For 1914 it was $8,750, there being $8,222.85 expended. The department has 49 men altogether and maintains four permanent stations and one volunteer department at Clark. The apparatus consists of four hose carrying automobiles, one automobile equipped with a double 120-gallon chemical tank, one combination hose and chemical truck, one motor driven city service truck and ladders, one chief’s automobile, in addition to much additional equipment such as hand reels, reserve hose, etc. In his last report Chief Grant said: “I would like to recommend the purchase of an up-to-date fire alarm system to consist of a 12-circuit automatic battery switchboard and a 10-circuit automatic battery repeater, this to take the place of the present fire alarm system which 1 wish to state to the best of my ability is not qualified for actual service, having been outgrown by the needs of this department for the vast amount of unprotected territory that is now being covered 1 would also respectfully suggest that we make the new purchase during the year of 1916, making No. 2 station, located at Nineteenth avenue and Adam street, a more central location, for this alarm and by turning the present alarm system over to the police department exclusively for the betterment ot their service.”