Nipped in the Bud
Fire prevention inspectors in Alexandria, Va., report that a potential hazard to the people of their city has been nipped in the bud.
On the afternoon of March 14, two inspectors on a routine inspection of a florist shop discovered the use of flammable artificial flowers. Employees were occupied with making floral wreaths, table center-pieces and corsages with the flowers.
After examining the questionable stock, a match flame test was made on the outside of the building and this confirmed the flammability of the material. As soon as the inspectors recited the local ordinance forbidding sale of this material and demonstrated its potential hazard with the flame test, the merchants readily agreed that these flowers were “too hot to handle.” After notifying their fire prevention office and Chief Bernard J. Padgett, the neighboring jurisdictions of Washington, D. C., Arlington and Fairfax Counties were immediately advised of this hazardous situation, and working under mutual agreements, the materials were returned to the distributors for disposition.
A canvass of local shops revealed that preparation was being made especially for the Easter holiday and Mothers’ Day. It was later determined that some of the flowers were manufactured in this country and some imported from Japan.
Subsequently it was further determined that the flammable flowers can be stored indefinitely, thus creating the problem of redistribution at a later time.