New Orleans Fire Department.

New Orleans Fire Department.

During the last year material progress in the organization of the New Orleans. La., fire protection service of the city has been made, and it is now better able to cope with a serious conflagration than ever before in the history of the city. During the year the department responded to 647 alarms of fire, says Chief Louis Jujol, “of which 606 were actual fires, 19 were unnecessary alarms and 22 were false alarms. Of the above fires and alarms 597 were confined to the building or place of origin, 20 extended to adjoining buildings and 22 extended beyond adjoining buildings; 527 were in frame buildings, 89 were in brick buildings, and 31 were in other than buildings. The total estimated loss for the year was $660,414. and the amount of insurance involved was $3,822,453. The. department has purchased one auto hose wagon and one city service hook and ladder truck. They have had rebuilt two first-class steam fire engines. Contract has been given for three new auto hose wagons, capable of carrying 1,200 feet of 2½inch hose and 300 feet of 3/4-inch chemical engine hose. Within a short time there will be added to the department force the following companies for which quarters have been erected as follows: Auto hose company at Laurel and Upperline streets, manned by seven men; auto hose company at Ereret and Upperline streets, manned by seven men; auto hose company at Louisiana avenue, near Liberty; manned by seven men; hook and ladder truck company at Louisiana avenue, near Liberty, manned by seven men ; hook and ladder company, Carrollton avenue and Moss street, manned by seven men; this will give an addition to the present force of five companies and thirty-five men. New engine houses were established in Laurel and Upperline streets, Freret and Upperline streets. Louisiana avenue near Liberty street. Carrollton avenue, near Moss, nearing completion, Alexander and Iberville streets, to replace old quarters. Flans and specifications are to lie soon drawn for the new Central Station to be located on Decatur street.

CHIEF LOUIS PUJOL, NEW ORLEANS, LA.

New Orleans Fire Department.

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New Orleans Fire Department.

The condition of the fire department in New Orleans, La., has been the subject of caustic criticism, on the part of the National Board of Underwriters and the Louisiana Fire Prevention Bureau, the condition of the apparatus and the efficiency of the organization having been alike assailed.

Following a sugges tion from the mayor, an investigation com mittee has made a thorough examination into the condition of the department, and its re nort recently published shows that things are by no means in as peril ov’s a condition as the insurance men would like people to believe.

In the first place, as the apparatus, it i pronounced in excel lent order, well housed and in condition to re spond promptly andcfficiently to any call made upon it. That thepresent distribution ot the apparatus might betmproved upon is ad mitted. especially m some of the important mercantile sections, even the creation ot new com panics might, in one or two instances, he ail visable to ensure more complete protection,

As for the personnel of the department, it is pronounced fully up to that of any f the northern and eastern cities, with a small pro portion ot old men, most of whom are cm ployed as engineers. Concerning the chief on gineer, while his age-he has served the city in its tire department fifty live years -may he urged against him, in this age of “young men,” he is vigorous, keen in his mental faculties ami altogether capable, while having done good work with the faulty water supply and detcc live apparatus of old times, he should be capable of much better work with the excellent equipment now at his command.

The committee finds much to condemn in the government of the department by a commission of eleven members, till of whom are more or less subject to the blighting influence of local politics. It recommends reduction of the number of lire commissioners and their emancipation from political influence, better pay and more and better drilling for the men. with the provision, if possible, of a drill tower, more men and apparatus for the mercantile districts, discarding of old-style apparatus, such as two-wheel hose reals, and the provision of an extra reserve of say 10,000 ft. of new hose for possible emergency use. The fire alarm system is described as adequate and in firstclass condition, while no city in the country is better provided with an unlimited supply of water, under sufficient pressure for all purposes.

The report, as a whole and in detail, relieves the department of much of the discredit that has been cast upon it, and must tend to reassure the many citizens whose well being is in a measure dependent on their effective protcc tion from lire risks.