Practical Fire Fighting in Schools.
Chief William E. Markwith, of East Orange, N. J., has suggested a means of practical firelighting in schools, a short abstract of which was given some weeks ago in these columns. His new plan he considers will also cause benefit to accrue to the pupils in after life, when some of the graduates of the public schools will naturally drift into the service of their own or some other city; wherefore the older ones should be organised into a company as firefighters and as a salvage corps, and so learn, either as school children or afterwards as men to guard against and ward off a senseless stampede. Chief Markwith adds: “Fire-drills in charge of teachers have saved hundreds of lives; supplemented by welldrilled companies such as I have mentioned, many more might have been rescued and immense property values saved. Some definite suggestions may not be out of place: No. 1— That a 40-gal. tank be mounted upon four wheels, with all the equipments and 200 ft. of J4-in. hose, same to be housed in a small building attached to the school property to be called fire station No. 1, 2 and so on, in accordance with the name of the local schools. No. 2—That about twenty-five of the larger boys be secured from the upper classes of the schools, and that they be organised into companies and from the members of the companies a foreman and an assistant foreman be appointed by the teachers of the several schools, or in the higher grades be elected by the pupils. No. 3—That there be two companies formed in each school, one known as chemical companyNo. 1, and one as protection company No. 2, and each company to drill to their station—-the chemical company to take charge of the chemicals and company No. 2 to see that all doors are safely open and to drill in other ways for the protection of life and salvage of property. No. 4—That the two companies drill not less than once a week and the chief of the fire department and one of the firemen call at the several schools about every six weeks, or by notice from the school board, to see that the tanks and chemicals are kept in proper shape, and to advise and assist in drilling the companies.”
A $50,000 fire for some time threatened to wine out South River, N. J. Manv buildings, including one of large size, in which were the Dost office and several good stores. Nearly the whole of the business section was burned up and some handsome residences shared the same fate. The blaze started in a barber shop, and an inadequate water supply allowed the flames to get beyond control. Fire apparatus was sent from New Brunswick.