M.D. Prescribes a Modern Fire Department
Every fire-minded fire fighter, not to speak of “high-voltage buff,” has desired at some time to have his own fire chief’s car, rigged and fitted as he would like it, with all the gadgets and panoply of the modern fire fighter.
They may well envy Dr. Theodore C. Hobbs, Chief of the Concord Township (Ohio) Fire Department, who has done an outstanding job of advancing the department, regardless of his unique imported fire chief’s motor car.
Besides being chief of the department and one of its organizers, Dr. Hobbs is a photographer, a sports car enthusiast and all-round handyman. He is also the proud possessor of an English “MG” which doubles for him as his chief’s car. The roadster is obviously foreign-looking. Its manufacturer, however, would never recognize it now. What left the factory two years ago as a conventional, streamlined sports car has sprouted a six-volt siren, short wave radio, three blinking red lights, and an instrument panel that looks like it had come from a B-37 bomber.
Spurred by a rash of burning houses and barns in the area, and a lack of adequate fire protection, a year and a half ago Dr. Hobbs and a group of associates got together and decided to learn to be firemen. “We were green at it,” he says, “and it looked hopeless.”
To encourage the men, he told them they should get together and start a fire department. This they did and the next thing he knew he was Chief.
The Township has two fire units, a pumper and an auxiliary pumper-tanker. The firehouse is on the grounds of the Girls Industrial School, atop which is a powerful steam whistle, which summons the volunteers when they’re needed.
Dr. Hobbs, is proud of his little red car. He uses it in his work as well as fire fighting. It will do 80 M.P.H. he claims, and it is highly maneuverable. A locker behind the seat holds axe, fire hat and coat and one-gallon fire extinguisher. It has plexi-glass windows and safety belt for the driver, and a fibre glass top that looks like steel.