Priority in Shipment of Fire Department Necessities Granted
After months of labor on the part of the committee appointed at the last convention of the International Association of Fire Engineers, consisting of Chiefs John Kettlon of New York, W. H. Murphy of Philadelphia and August Emrich of Baltimore, and seconded by the efforts of this journal, the Priority Division of the War Industries Board has announced that fire apparatus and parts of hose and fire department supplies have been placed on the priority shipment list, and have been given the classification of A6. This is a very high rating, and places the products enumerated just below munitions and government stores, in priority. The chairman of the Division, in announcing the decision, especially emphasized the fact that it must be distinctly understood and stated that all such articles ordered are “absolutely necessary.” The importance of this ruling was illustrated recently by a case in point. Three out of the nine fireboats of New York city were out of commission for weeks, and had to be laid up because of the non-delivery of boiler tubes ordered for them, and which the manufacturers could not deliver on account of the freight congestion. This is only one of hundreds of instances where delays of this kind endangered supplies and munitions through lack of fire protection, through no fault of the fire departments, but through lack of the power to ship by the manufacturers. Testimony to this effect was laid so strongly before the War Industries Board that it was finally induced to act. The decision favorable to the departments and the manufacturers has been the result, and it will prove of incalculable benefit not only to the fire interests but also to the industries relying on them for protection against incendiarism and carelessness. Fire Commissioner Drennan, on his return from Washington, where he had attended the meeting of the board, expressed himself as very well pleased with the decision, and that it Was a very important one for the fire departments.