Short Cuts and Gadgets

Short Cuts and Gadgets


On the wall of each of the several fire houses in Lewistown, Penna., is a large card on which is lettered in large type the month or period during which the respective companies respond to out-of-town calls.

Each company takes its turn in responding to calls for help from outside the city to equalize the duty and the card is a notification to all drivers and members of the company whether or not they are due to respond to the call.


From Thomas J. Showers, Engine Company No. 4, Los Angeles County Fire Department, Garvey, Calif., comes a description of a hose roller that should interest other readers of FIRE ENGINEERING.

Here is how Fireman Showers puts it. in his own words and pictures:

“Enclosed you will find three photographs showing the use of a hose roller used by nearly all Los Angeles Fire Department stations.

It can be used either for doughnut rolls as shown, or straight rolls with either end (male or female) in.

The wheel slips on an iron axle that can be placed anywhere convenient and is held from sliding on by a cotter-key. It can be slid off to make removal of the hose easier.

When not in use, two cotter-keys are removed, the axle slid into the wall and the wheel hung away. The use of this device cuts rolling time in half (and, say we, should make for neater, more uniform rolls, too). (Thank you Fireman Showers.)


We know of a village having several fire companies which has plotted all the major hazards of the community—the business districts, apartment houses, churches, large garages and so on—and furnished each company with blueprints of the diagrams, in a simple loose-leaf binder. Each chart shows not only the structural hazard and exposures, but the location of hydrants, fire alarm boxes, water supplies and other useful information. Each shows where the village fire companies will take their station in the event of an alarm for that particular hazard. Further, the diagram shows where in the event it is required, the mutual aid responses will be located to operate most effectively.

Cross-section View of Hose Roller

Of course, operations on an actual fire in the respective areas cannot be expected to exactly follow the diagrammed pattern, but having it all studied out and planned beforehand is better than not having any predetermined plans.

In this village the departmental drills each month are held on these respective hazards and on certain occasions the neighborhood fire forces are summoned and respond and drill with the local firemen just as nearly as they would in time of real emergency. On other occasions the diagrams are used for indoor, or blackboard drills. Finally, drivers of the apparatus take out their trucks at certain intervals and follow the route they would take to each of the hazards, spot their truck accordingly so as to be thoroughly familiar with hydrants, traffic and topographic conditions, and so on, night as well as dav.


A new’ slant to an old idea, this telephone card or chart is submitted by contributor Thomas F. Gerity, Cleveland, Ohio.

Mr. Gerity cairns that every home that has a telephone should have one of these charts close at hand for ready reference. If they did ,says he, there would be no delay and less excitement when the fire or police department etc., are wanted.

On the suggested chart, Mr. Gerity has listed three doctors, (the family physician and two neighborhood doctors) in case the family practitioner can not be reached.

Any community can develop a similar card, adding to or subtracting from the list as desired. Incidentally, the card wouldn’t be such a bad advertisement for any progressively-minded person or company to send to all telephone users in his or its community—with the advertiser’s name inconspicuously added. . .

Operation of the Simplified Hose Roller: (1) Ready for Winding, Bight of Hose Looped Over Pinion(2) Winding Doughnut Roll(3) Roll Completed and Wheel Removed.

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