LODGINOHOUSE FIRE IN GLASGOW.
It will be remembered that some weeks ago a fire, accompanied by a terrible loss of life, took place in a lodginghottse at Glasgow, Scotland, the exact cause of which is not known, although an inspection made after the ruins were cool showed that common candles were surreptitiously used in the cubicles, the wooden box supplied as a seat being used as a stand for the candle. Moreover, nearly every bunk remaining after the lire contained a pipe, and it is natural to surmise that the outbreak was caused either through the careless use of candles or smoking. The inspection, made by Divisional Officer Gamble, of tinLondon fire brigade, showed that the fire, originating as it did in the heart of the dormitory, which was divided up into wooden cubicles, and the “windows being broken, the flames would be drawn round the tiers of cubicles to the door opening on the staircase, and that the heat and smoke would then ascend to the attic floor above and cut off the retreat of the men sleeping there. The fire was undoubtedly assisted by gas escaping where the heat had melted the composite gas piping. * * *” The lessons to be learned from the catastrophe amply support what it has always been contended would happen in the event of such a tire taking place. The following points stand out prominently: “That a well-constructed stone staircase, inclosed in brick walls, became a source of dangc r by reason of the position in which it was placed, and, also, through its being the only means of escape, and not being cut off from dormitories by stnokeproof doors. That the ‘deafening,’ although only one and a half inches in thickness, prevented the fire passing through the floors, and that the small portion of lath and plaster partition in the attic kept the fire in check for some time. That a building, however, substantially constructed, becomes absolutely dangerous, if the internal fittings are of wood or other combustible material. That lodgers should never be so securely locked up as to prevent their readily getting away in case of danger. And, further, that in such circumstances the people who frequent lodginghouses, with rare exceptions, lose their beads and will not leave the neighborhood of their belongings until forced to do so. It has hitherto been argued on behalf of lodginghottse keepers that the contrary was the case.”