Philadelphia’s Fire Department Equipment

Philadelphia’s Fire Department Equipment

Declaring that most of the equipment of the fire bureau is alarmingly antiquated, and that many improvements are urgently needed, Director of Public Safety Porter of Philadelphia, has made a report to Mayor Blankenburg of his fifteen months’ investigation, and suggests that the sum of two million dollars or thereabouts, be appropriated to place the department on a proper footing. The director says that he was astonished when he discovered how bad conditions were in the fire bureau. He found that 60 per cent, of steam fire engines were of obsolete design, unable to do 50 per cent, of the work expected of them. Thirty-four of these old-type engines, he recommends, should be immediately replaced by plunger pump type motor-driven apparatus, at a cost of $350,000. He also discovered that of the 16 aerial trucks in service only one is of modern construction, and that only three are motor driven. He suggests new equipment to cost $125,000. Nineteen old engines also need reconstruction at a cost of $85,000, and new combination wagons, fuel wagons and battalion chiefs’ cars are needed, at a total cost of $320,000. He also suggests a new fireboat to cost $100,000. The biggest item in the director’s requisition is for new police and fire houses, to cost $1,000,000. He says improvements in the Electrical Bureau, including new police and fire signal systems, also are urgent. A complete list of fire department requirements, as made by the director, is as follows:

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