Fire Prevention Day October 9

Fire Prevention Day October 9

The Chicago committee on publicity and education is making preparations for the annual observance of Fire Prevention Day, which was inaugurated and has since been fostered by it. Governor Dunne on September 1 issued his proclamation setting aside October 9, the anniversary of the Chicago conflagration of 1871, as Fire Prevention Day, and letters have been sent to the Governors of all the other Western States, together with the insurance commissioners and fire marshals, urging similar action. As soon as proclamations are issued they will be followed up in the usual way with letters to municipal officers, commercial organizations and local agents urging co-operation. Governor Dunne’s proclamation reads as follows: “We are at the present day living at a time in the history of our country when the question of the preservation of resources, natural and otherwise, is receiving a great deal of attention. It therefore seems to me that the question of the preservation of any sort of property from all sorts of extravagant or needless waste should receive a kindly reception from the general public. One of the vital problems which calls upon our people for solution is the situation with regard to the waste of energy and resources in all parts of the country by fire. Our forests are being preserved, our water power and waterways developed and utilized, and the hidden forces of nature conserved and made subservient to the well-being of man. It therefore seems to me to be eminently fit and proper that we should now direct our attention to the unnecessary waste of our property assets, and the appalling loss of life by fire. Statistics prepared by the Fire Marshal Department of Illinois show that the fire waste is increasing annually and the fire loss in the State of Illinois in 1914 averaged over $1,000,000 per month. Besides this, in that year alone nearly 400 people in this State lost their lives through the agency of fire. The losses thus occasioned constitute an absolute waste and a drain upon our resources such as no nation or State can long endure, and the fact that they are largely preventable is a reproach to our people and calls for an immediate remedy. For the reasons herein set forth, and in order to arouse our people to a vivid sense of fire dangers and induce them to take more active interest in the subject, I hereby proclaim that Friday, the ninth day of October, 1914, be known as State Fire Prevention Day, and I earnestly recommend that our people observe it by a general cleaning up and removal of rubbish, trash and waste from their premises. Let all heating apparatus and chimneys be carefully gone over and placed in a proper condition for winter use. Let all public and private institutions, hotels, asylums, factories and theatres be carefully looked over on that day and, when necessary, any changes made that will further protect the safety of the occupants. Let local authorities give attention to the matter of better building regulations, fire protection and prevention, as well as added apparatus for fire fighting. Lastly, let fire drills be held on that day in institutions, factories and in public, parochial and private schools, and I earnestly recommend that teachers instruct their pupils, through short talks and proper programmes, on the dangers of fire and the simpler means of fire prevention.”

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