Fire Prevention and Fire Fighting in Washington.
Six hundred and eighty-six bell and 579 local alarms of fire were received during the year at the nation’s capital, an increase of 141 over the preceding year. The total estimated lire loss was $526,030, covered by an insurance of $4,241,853. This fire loss is an increase of $214,511 over the loss for the preceding year and is due to large extent to the number of extra alarm fires, twenty-four such fires causing a total loss of $330,521. Notwithstanding this increase, the work of the fire department in handling the large number of fires is most gratifying, and the efficiency of the department has been maintained at a high standard. The inspection of the business houses, hotels, apartment houses, etc. has been conscientious and thorough throughout the year, and the value of such fire prevention efforts is apparent when the comparative freedom of the busi ness section of the commnuity from fire is noted. The protection of patrons of theatres, moving picture houses and other places of public assembly and amusement has also been given the closest supervision by the department and no precaution has been overlooked to render such places as safe as possible in event of fire or panic. In connection with the work of a congressional committee, the chief engineers of the department has made inspections of the various buildings owned by the federal government and has recommended adequate protection from fire for the occupants thereof, as well as for government records. The following motor apparatus has been provided the fire department during the year: One combination chemical engine and hose wagon; one car for the chief engineer, and one car for the superintendent of machinery. Additional motor fire apparatus has been included in the estimates of the commissioners for the coming year and it is hoped that Congress will grant the appropriation. Discipline in the fire department has been maintained at its usual high standard and the conduct of the officers and members has been such that only in extremely rare cases was it necessary for the commissioners to admisister severe punishment for violations of the rules. November 25, 1910, a new fire company designated as “engine company No. 23,” was placed in service on 12th street between G and H streets northwest. The flags presented annually to the engine company and the truck company having the highest standard during the year, both in discipline and efficiency, were won by engine company No. 21, under the command of Capt. E. O’Connor, and truck company No. 1, under the command of Capt. C. E. Schrom.