High School Fire in Houston

High School Fire in Houston

(From Our Regular Correspondent)

Central high school building, Houston. Texas, was gutted by fire recently. Central fire station, two blocks distant, was notified of fire by messenger at 11:15 p. m., followed by box alarm, and by second and third alarms in quick succession, calling out almost the entire fire department under Chief Fred C. Seibert. The fire, which had evidently been smouldering for some time, was discovered in the upper part of the south end of the building. It spread rapidly, owing to the nature of the construction, and with the arrival of the first companies, the upper part of the building seemed to be completely involved. The building, which occupied a city block, was surrounded on all sides with streams and the fire was not only confined to the building, but there was much salvage from the basement and two lower floors. The structure was of brick, with wooden floors and pine interior and was built in 1890, while an annex was added to the north end of the building in 1909. The building was valued at about $175,000. The loss was estimated at $147,000 on building and $20,000 additional on contents. It was a hot and rapid fire, but was brought under control within a few hours after it started, although companies remained on the scene until the following afternoon. The building had long been regarded as a fire trap and had once been condemned. The structure housed 1,200 students.

Central High School Building, Houston, After Fire

The fire department did excellent work and the manner in which the fire was handled by Chief Seibert and his assistant received much praise. There were 25 water lines in use at the fire at one time, 19 of them being engine streams. Seven steam fire engines and three motor pumpers were in use. Two other steam fire engines did not work on the fire. A water tower attachment to aerial truck, three Deluge sets and one Siamese line rendered effective service. Hose laid amounted to 13,000 feet 2 1/2-inch, 2,650 feet 3-inch, and some chemical hose. One length of hose burst during the fire. Much of the hose used was Eureka, Baker Fabric and Boston Woven.

One American-LaFrance Aerial truck, two American LaFrance motors and one Seagrave motor pump, one Clapp & Jones, one extra first size Metropolitan, four LaFrance and one Ahrens steam fire engines were in service. One Continental and one Metropolitan engine were not in use.

P. Goldman, Inc., of New York, have opened a southern office in 521 Godchaux Building, New Orleans, La., for the sale of their uniform and civilian headwear.

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