Reliability of the Motor Engine
It is well known that Chief Kenlon of the New York Fire Department was reluctant to endorse motor fire engines until he had full opportunity to test their stability. It must be satisfactory to the builders of motor engines to know that the first motor engine installed in the fire department of New York has now been in service for two years, and from the records obtainable, it has fully established a good reputation for this class of machine. Engine No. 39, Waterous Motor Pumper, was purchased by Commissioner Johnson without the formality of advertising for bids, and was housed at headquarters ot the department, East Sixty-seventh Street, so that Chief Kenlon and the Commissioner might be able to study its operation. The engine went into commission February 19, 1912, and the records at the station show that from that date to February 28, 1914, it had made 452 runs, and that during one year it was not a day out of service. Later, it met with an accident, caused by the chauffeur running into an elevated railroad post, while on its way to a fire, to avoid coming into collision with an auto containing four members of a family. Notwithstanding this, the engine was only out of service a few weeks when it was returned to its quarters. Since that time it has been doing as effective duty as during its first twelve months of constant work. At the recent piano box fire in the city, the engine worked thirteen hours and fifteen minutes without shutdown, carrying an average pressure of 200 pounds. After returning to its house from this fire, it was called out on a third alarm and worked steadily for four hours. This was during the days of the blizzard when the streets of the city were blocked with snow, and it reached the scene of the fire with little or no hindrance. These facts are mentioned as showing that motor fire engines have certainly reached a stage beyond experiment, and besides the above record the fact was corroborated during the tests made while the Convention of the Internaticnal Association of Fire Engineers was held in this city. The engine referred to is a six cylinder machine, and was purchased at the cost of $10,000.