MODERN FIRE-FIGHTING METHODS.
IT is interesting to note the rapid changes made in the fire-fighting service of the country. Many of the old, but by many cherished,methods have disappeared, and like the hand engine never to return, unless incases of extreme emergency. In their place we have such modernized equipment as self-propelling or automobile engines and wagous, keyless fire alarm boxes; rubber tires and roller-bearing axles; steamers with electric search lights; electric hose signalling; large fire streams, fireboats and special fire force mains, besides numerous appliances that have reduced the conquering of fire to almost a science. So rapid have these improvements been made that the ordinary mind can scarcely keep pace with them. It is not possible to predict what may be the principal methods adopted, or w^at description of apparatus will be used in the future, but it seems easy to predict, when looking back at what has taken place, that fora certainty,electricity will play an important part in whatever fire apparatus or appliances may be hereafter invented. Many oi the various devices used for summoning firemen to duty, are cumbersome and slow of operation. Auxiliary systems are useful in their way, such as the telephone, but for prompt service nothing has been devised up to the present time to equal the electric telegraph fire alarm for instantaneous and absolutely reliable operation. The excitement caused by bell ringing and steam whistle blowing is still attractive to many, but as we progress and electricity forces old methods out of the way, we shall wonder why such primitive methods ever remained with us so long. True it is that we are far from perfection in the means employed for fire protection today, but with the progressive manufacturers of fire apparatus now engaged in devising the best machines for that purpose,we may expect a steady improvement all along the line in the production of the best fire fighting tools possible to produce.