Kalmazoo Annual Fire Report
The annual report of Chief Charles H. Russell, of the Kalamazoo, Mich., fire department, states there were 207 fires during the year ending March 31st, 1915. This number was a decrease of 95 from the previous year, “which increase was in part due to our enforcing the ordinances regarding tearing down old and dangerous wooden buildings, also requiring merchants and others to bale up their waste papers and other materials, liable to start fires; also the enforcement of the ordinances relative to safety in the placing of smokepipes, chimneys and proper electric wiring.” The causes of the year’s fires are given as follows: Ashes, 2; automobiles, 8; boilers, 1; chimneys, 26; cigars, 7; firecrackers, 1; furnaces, 11; gasoline, 5; gas heaters, 10; grass, 12; incendiary, 6; lamps, 2; live wires, 15; locomotives, 3; matches, 8; oil stoves, 4; rubbish, 9; spontaneous combustion, 7; stoves and pipes, 21; torches, 4; unknown, 33; false alarms, 9; incubator, 1; lantern, 1; lightning, 1. The Gamewell system consists of: No. 1 Fire Station— 1 Gamewell 6-circuit switchboard; 1 Star 5circuit repeater; 1 Star register; 1 gong; 1 motor generator; 196 cells battery; 1 transmitter. No. 2 Fire Station—1 gong and indicator. No. 3 Fire Station—1 gong and indicator. No. 4 Fire Station—1 gong and register. No. 5 Fire Station—1 gong and indicator. No. 6 Fire Station—1 gong and register; 15 miles of overhead wire; 48 fire alarm boxes, 4 are private. The total value of property at risk for the year ending January 1, 1915, is given as $1,669,609.29, and the total insurance at $1,208,935.00. The total insurance loss is placed at $97,092.16. The fire department expenditures for the year ending March 31, 1915, amounted to $66,527.13.