FIRE DRILL IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

FIRE DRILL IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

A writer in Harper’s Weekly makes the following remarks on the advantages of fire drill in public schools. “Protecting crowds from accidents is a problem of the cities. The averting of catastrophes in schools and theatres, at meetings and on excursions, rests with the lawmakers, the police and the firemen. There have been six school fires in New York during the last year. In none of them was there a death, and the only reported injury was a stumped toe. Under the law. the public schools must have exits and hose stations a plenty, and there must be fire drills in each building at least twice a month. So thoroughly trained are the pupils that they drop everything on the instant, form in double files, and march out. It takes two minutes to get 3,000 of them to the street. The signal sounds so frequently for drills that when a real danger arises the children never realise it, but go downstairs laughing and talking as though fires were everyday affairs.”

At Raritan. X. J.. five barns and a store bunted. Loss, $10,000.

FIRE DRILL IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

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FIRE DRILL IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

Not very long ago there was a fire in public school No. 26, borough of Richmond, New York. The gong for fire dismissal was sounded, and the building was emptied in two minutes without any excitement or confusion, although the fire was in the basement. The children marched out quietly, the blaze was extinguished and school duties were resumed a half hour later. This incident furnishes a testimonial of the value of the fire drill in schools. The pupils had been so well drilled in obeying the signal of the gong that they marched out as a matter of course when it sounded, with as little thought of danger as on any other day when they practised “fire dismissal.” Had they not been familiarised with the mameuvre, there is no telling what injuries might have been inflicted in a panic rush of frightened children for the exits. And the danger from panic is generally greater than that from the fire itself. The fire drill is general now in all public schools. In the Philadelphia and New Jersey public schools the ease and speed with which the buildings are emptied in this exercise is as marvelous a show as the rapidity with which the fire department responds to an alarm.