It is no wonder that British villages, even when partially provided with fire protection, are swept by fire when a blaze starts. Three fires in such villages, all more or less destructive, are reported as having taken place last month. At one, South Stoke, in Oxfordshire, three cottages were burned, with a loss of $15,000. At Framlingham, Suffolk, three. In each place the cottages invited destruction, at Framlingham a little more so. The cottages, which were in a block, were of ancient structure, built entirely of reeds, laths and plaster, the only brickwork being the oldfashioned chimneys. The roofs were, however, pantiled, the thatch having been removed some seventy-five years ago; hut the reeds had been utilised for imbedding the tiles. Naturally, the cottages formed excellent fuel, and there would have been little chance of saving any of them under the most favorable circumstances. The local hand engine was of the vintage of at least a century ago. Unfortunately, the nearest water supply proved to he too far away for the fire brigade hose, and. to add to the difficulty, the connector which enables the brigade to use the hose from the College could not be found. After some delay, one of the brigade manuals was used to pump water into the drain running down the road, and, by blocking this at the lower end, a supply of water was obtained near the fire. A bucket corps, organised by the villagers, had in the meantime rendered first aid. and kept the fire within bounds until the brigade’s services were available. By this means the fire was practically restricted to the block of cottages first involved.
A broken wire in an automatic fire alarm equipment in a Peabody, Mass., factory gave the local fire department a needless run of half a mile.