FIRE DEPARTMENTS DOINGS
Six Baltimore, Md., firemen resigned and three were pensioned at recent meeting of the Fire Board.
Requests for salary increases have been made by firemen at Quincy, Ill.; Lake Charles, La., and Waukegan, Ill.
Mr. J. P. Eagan is to lecture to the Boys’ School of St. Alphonsus Church Thursday, March 7, on “Fires and Fire Fighters of St. Louis.”
A bill before Congress provides for a two-platoon system for the fire department of the District of Columbia. The bill has been referred to the House District Committee.
The town of Bellflower, Mo., lost 18 of its business buildings and came near to being entirely consumed in a recent fire caused by defective electric wiring. A $100,000 loss is reported.
Nine firemen were injured, two seriously, when a combination fire truck on its way to a fire collided with a street car in Muncie, Ind., on March 19. The truck, costing the city $8,500, is a total wreck.
Jersey City, N. J., has increased the salaries of its firemen five hundred dollars a year. This action of the commission government will be confirmed by the vote of the people in the fall.
The Cincinnati, O., fire department has recently been augmented by a special life-saving squad equipped for any emergency. The members of this squad are all picked men of resourcefulness and bravery.
Four business buildings and a church were destroyed and about a dozen damaged by a fire that swept the business district of Johnstown, Pa., March 24. The loss is estimated at more than $500,000. Twelve firemen were burned or injured by falling walls.
Firemen at Hoboken, N. J., are willing to forego the establishment of the twoplatoon system planned to go into operation on May 1, in accordance with the vote of the people at the last election. Loss of city revenues this year has moved the firemen to show this considerate spirit in the matter.
The volunteer fire company of Warsaw, Ind., consisting of eighty members, and the largest volunteer fire company in the state, has been granted a membership into the Northeastern Indiana Firemen’s Association. The 1918 convention of the volunteer companies of this section of the state will be held June 21, at Kendallville.
Patrick Shay, who for thirty-seven years was a member of the St. Louis fire department, died about February 20 of hardening of the arteries. Mr. Shay was assistant chief, and at times was in the Third, Eighth, First and Eleventh districts, where he retired owing to ill health. He has a son, Thomas, now on engine No. 17.
A $350,000 fire in Atlantic City, N. J., April 1, involved the destruction of eight buildings in the business section. Crossed wires in the rear of a building caused the fire. Two explosions in turpentine tanks following the first outbreak, brought the fire to so serious a state that a general alarm, calling the city’s 200 firemen, was sounded, and a call made on the Philadelphia firemen.
From reports covering the United States and Canada the estimated losses by fire during the week ended April 8th, 1918, aggregated $4,957,000, as compared with $3,426,500 for the corresponding week in 1917.
Assistant Chief William Hillen Koeter, after having had charge of the Fifth district for many years, resigned on February 28. Captain Herman Juelg, formerly of engine company No. 41, was promoted to the vacancy. Lieutenant Charles Wagner, of engine “company No. 14, was promoted to captain, and Pipeman Frank Kenny was promoted to lieutenant. Rumor has it that Chief Allers, of the Ninth district, will go to the Fifth district, and Chief Juelg to the Ninth district.
Frank J. Holland, for the past 18 years a permanent member of the fire department of Waterbury, Conn., has just been advanced to the position of fire marshal, and his compensation fixed at $1,800 per annum. Marshal Holland has been captain of Engine 4 of the department for the past few years and previous to that was at the head of one of the truck companies. Like some others, Fireman Holland joined the permanent forces when he reached his majority, and has made such an excellent fireman that his services were recognized by the Board of Public Safety, which body unanimously advanced him to his new position.
The Buckingham Hall building, of Waterbury, Conn., containing one of the most expensive concert halls of the state, together with a costly pipe organ, was partially destroyed by fire on the afternoon of March 14, last. The fire started under the roof of the five-story stone structure, in a blind attic, and directly under a sky light. In spite of the day time it was not discovered until about 15 minutes after it started, and consequently the entire roof was ablaze when the firemen arrived. Every fire pump in the city worked during the five hours the blaze was in progress. The damage by fire amounted to about $50,000, while there was considerable damage to tenants on the ground floor by water.
At a special meeting of the board of directors of the Pyrene Manufacturing Company, held on Saturday, March 30, 1918, C. Louis Allen, the president, resigned to become head of Allen Sales Service, Inc., of New York City, a new organization of sales managers who will market the products of a group of American manufacturers in this country, Canada, and for export. Among those who will be associated with Mr. Allen in the new enterprise are J. A. Miller, president of the Pyrene Manufacturing Company, Ltd., of Canada, T. F. Flanagan, William H. Yetman, and David
V. Stratton. These men are all well known executives in the sales specialty field, and the combined records of sales made under their direction would run well into the millions of dollars.
Flames had gained such headway in the West Park Southern Methodist Church, in Moberly, Mo., when they were discovered by a passerby and an alarm telephoned to the fire department that it was impossible for Chief J. D. Crews and the firemen to get inside the building, which was already doomed. The entire basement was on fire and smoke was pouring out of all the windows and through the roof and the structure was destroyed in one hour and 15 minutes. The church, constructed of brick veneer, was 60 by 80 feet in area. The fire started in the basement, and while the cause was not known for certain it is believed to have been an overheated furnace. Chief Crews and six firemen and a Hale combination truck were in service and worked hard. Two hydrants were available and two hydrant streams were thrown. Eleven hundred feet of hose were laid. The loss amounted to about $16,000.
By prompt and skilful action Chief William McGraw of Detroit, Mich., held a fire at the Detroit Metallic Bed Company’s plant to the third and fourth floors, where it was already burning when discovered at 5:41 p. m., and had the flames extinguished in five hours and a half without spreading to the other floors. The building, of brick, four stories high and 48 by 120 feet in area, had one partition wall. The blaze started at the centre of the thjrd floor; the cause is not known. Chief McGraw had four steam engines, six motor engines, one fireboat, one squad company and three truck companies, 169 firemen being present. Twenty hydrants of the double; 8-inch type were available and 21 engine streams were thrown, no plug streams being used. The water main in the street is 16 inches and the water supply was sufficient for supplying the engines. Eight thousand eight hundred feet of hose were in use.
A busines building in the heart of Beaumont. Tex., was the scene of a recent fire which Chief E. E. Eastham efficiently confined to the top floor, on which it started. The building is a five-story structure, 110 by 180 feet in area, and the fire, cause unknown, was discovered at 12:30 a. m. by the police. Chief Eastham, who responded to a telephone alarm, found flames bursting through the roof, and he promptly had eight engine streams on the blaze, the Ahrens-Fox motor pumping engines doing fine service. The apparatus in service at the fire included three engines, four hose wagons and one truck and 2,800 feet of Eureka fire hose. The building contained stores, offices, clubs and a theatre and Chief Eastham was successful in keeping the losses to the low figures of $20,000 on the building, valued at $140,000, and $12,000 on contents worth $80,000. Five hydrants, 300 feet apart, were in use, there being 65 pounds pressure at the time. Water was obtained from 12 and 8-inch mains. Chief Eastham extinguished the fire in six hours.