FIRE DEPARTMENTS DOINGS

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.

FIRE DEPARTMENTS DOINGS

FIRE DEPARTMENTS DOINGS

Better salaries for Los Angeles, Cal., firemen are sought.

Firemen of Dubuque, Iowa, have asked for a 20 per cent, salary increase.

Firemen at Wapakoneta, O., will receive a salary increase of $10 monthly.

Glen Ridge, N. J., firemen have been granted a salary increase of $100 a year.

Wage increase of $100 in annual salary was granted firemen at Glen Ridge, N. J.

A 50 per cent, increase in salaries has been voted the firemen at New Britain, Conn.

The Wapatoncta, O., city council has decided to raise the salaries of all firemen $10 a month.

Belleville, O., firemen, who have demanded a $15 increase, have refused a compromise of $10.

The Birmingham, Ala., firemen have petitioned the city for wage increases of from $5 to $10.

Members of the Scranton, Pa., city fire department are now affiliated with the American Federation of Labor.

Members of the Birmingham, Ala., fire department have asked for an increase in salary to become effective February 1.

The Valley City, N. D., fire department has recently been reorganized and has motor apparatus. It now numbers thirty members.

Firemen at East St. Louis, Mo., want an increase of $15, or $105 a month. The firemen are unionized and are off duty every third day.

The Duluth, Minn., city council has voted salary increases to the master mechanic of fire department, who will receive $150 in place of $120 per month.

The 1918 convention of the Nebraska State Volunteer Firemens’ Association was held in Fremont last tweek. Harry J. Hauser is president of the association.

The two-platoon system for the Syracuse, N. Y., fire department has been strongly recommended by Chief Thomas F. Ryan in his annual report of the fire department.

Seventy-seven members of the Dallas, Tex., fire department, 150 of whose members went on strike January 9, have made formal applications for reinstatement and were re-employed.

The Northwestern Ohio Volunteer Firemen’s Association will meet at Napoleon, June 19. Preparations for it have already begun, and is in charge of Chief W. A” Hoff and a committee of local firemen of Napoleon, O.

The fire loss of Eau Claire, Wis., for the year 1917 was $33,000, according to figures furnished by Fire Chief Welsh. This is $15,000 in excess of the year before, when the total loss for the twelve months was only $18,000.

The yearly report of Chief P. D. McCarthy of the Colorado Springs, Colo., fire department shows that the fire loss for the year was $30,344.57; 211 alarms were answered, and the department traveled 797.7 miles in responding to these calls.

From reports covering the United States and Canada the estimated losses by fire during the week ended January 28, 1918, aggregated $3,455,000, as compared with $3,955,400 for the corresponding week in 1917.

The members of the twelve fire companies of the city of Mobile, Ala., have organized a union. Every member of the department with the exception of three captains and four privates have joined. The union will be known as the City Firemen’s union, and they will be affiliated with the American Federation of Labor.

The firemen of Galveston, Tex., arc not at the present time organized or affiliated with the Texas Federation of Labor. The men were organized about a year and a half ago and were recognized by the federation, but did not apply for recognition from the city commissioner. Following the recent municipal election, the organization was disbanded.

Chief Edwin J. Coyle, of the Lockport, N. Y., fire department, in his annual report shows 84 alarms were given during the year 1917, of which 40 were box calls and 44 were still alarms, with a total loss of $34,488.95. His report for the month of December shows the total cost of maintenance of the new motor apparatus last month to be only $50.96, only four alarms being responded to during the period.

Forty substitute city firemen were placed on the Cincinnati, O., Fire Department’s regular pay-roll January 1. according to Chief Houston. Heretofore “subs” were paid $2 for every day they worked. Now they will receive $2.50 every day in the year, but must live in the engine houses. Thirty-one changes, in the nature of transfers, in the department, were made by Chief Houston.

The city of Baltimore, Md., insures its firemen. It recently gave a contract for accident insurance for officers and members of the fire department to a local agency. For an annual premium of $1.54 per man, the firm agrees to pay claims as follows: Death or disability resulting from accident while in the discharge of duty, $500; loss of both hands, or both feet, or a hand and a foot, or both eyes, $500; loss of a hand or a foot, $250.

At the annual meeting of the Omaha Veteran Firemen’s Association the following officers were elected for the year 1918: Past president, Gust A. Williams; president, A. B. Frary; first vice-president, Zenas Stevens; second vice-president, Charles Schutt; secretary, F. H. Koesters: treasurer, C. G. Hunt; trustees, Charles Schutt, G. A. Williams, J. W. Jardine. W. A. Kelley, A. B. Frary, G. A. Williams.

The National Board of Fire Underwriters has called attention to the fact that the list of fires in munitions plants and the like, compiled by the underwriters, was not all ascribed by its experts to incendiaries. A statement from the board declared that while some of them undoubtedly were so caused, others were almost certainly of non-incendiary origin, and still others were in doubt. The original compilation showed a marked increase in the total destructiveness of such fires during recent years.

Due to the efforts of Chief J. T. Mertz, the members of the Akron, O., fire department have been granted substantial raises in salary by the city council, beginning February 25. Firemen of first year’s service are to be raised from $1,020 to $1,200; after one year’s service, from $1,200 to $1,320; after two years’ service, from $1,200 to $1,500. The officers are raised proportionately, the chief’s salary being increased from $2,650 to $3,000. In January, 1917, the men were allowed one day of 24 hours off in five; in February, 1918, they will be given one day in three.

Members of the Minneapolis, Minn., Firemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association, were informed recently by Chief Ringer that 55 men will be dropped from the payroll March 1. The chief expressed regret that the action must be taken as result of the city’s retrenchment policy, but encouraged the firemen by declaring that after the conscription of eligible firemen, only about 15 men will lose their jobs. There are 455 firemen in active duty in Minneapolis, requiring an annual appropriation of $733,000. The men will be dropped from the payroll according to the length of time they have been in service.

The city fire marshal of Port Arthur, Tex., has reported the total loss from fire for the year 1917, to have been $67,450. For the year 1916 there was a total of 117 runs made with a total loss reported of $63,810. This is the first year the department has been put on a complete motor basis and had the large loss of the laundry building been avoided the total for the year would have been largely below the loss for the previous year. With the two main streets well paved the city’s fire equipment can reach a fire in any part of the city in a very short time. The city has six pieces of the very latest model of motor driven fire apparatus.

Chief Thomas A. Clancy, of Milwaukee Fire Department needs 40 more men in order to run the department in accordance with new law which provides one day off in three. “At vacation time we will be unable to carry out the requirements of the measure,” said Chief Clancy. “There will be a shortage of men and we will have to go back to the old system. The age for firemen,” said Chief Clancy, “is from 24 to 32 years. This brings the men within the draft age and we have a hard time getting men because they do not care to begin to take up any new work until they know whether they will be drafted.” Chief Clancy favors lowering the height for firemen from five feet seven inches to five feet six inches.