Fire Proof Motor Apparatus Stations
Fire Prevention Commissioner O’Keefe, of Massachusetts, has informed fire departments in that state what they must do to make all motor fire apparatus stations fire proof. In the first place the space used for the storage of motor fire apparatus must have a cement or concrete floor. Its walls shall be constructed of fireproof material or metal lined and it shall have a metal or fireproof ceiling. The windows shall have metal frames for the glass and where they open out in near contact with other property the panes shall be of wired glass. In other words, hereafter, in all stations used for the storage of apparatus using gasoline, either for tractors or pumps, or having automobile motive power, the building shall be made as near fireproof as it is possible to make it, and the roofs of all such houses shall be slated or of non-combustible material. This means the rebuilding of many fire stations, which not a few believe is not necessary. They say that fire stations with firemen and fire apparatus in them all the time are safe enough as they are, and that there is no just reason for reconstructing old stations just to make them absolutely fireproof, which, if carried into effect, means the reconstruction of hundreds of practically new stations, which are now as near fireproof as any actual necessity requires. The construction of new stations, they say, should be in accordance with the commissioner’s regulations, but old stations should not be disturbed to any extent, as they are under constant fire protection by the men and apparatus occupying them. Deputy Chief George C. Neal, of the District Police, who is the fire marshal of the State, had already started on this very thing, the requirement that fire department houses, especially those housing motor apparatus of any kind, shall be made fireproof before the office of fire prevention commissioner was created. The new metropolitan fire hazard act makes the power of the fire prevention commissioner mandatory and he intends that there shall be no more delay than is absolutely necessary.