SOUTHWESTERN FIRE CHIEFS HOLD OUTSTANDING CONVENTION
Next Convention to be Held in Houston, Tex.—Chief George B. Goff Heads Association—Progress in Fire Schools Reported
THE Southwestern Association of Fire Chiefs just closed a most successful convention in Dallas; previous registration figures were exceeded. The convention closed with double the number of members compared with the number at the close of the 1930 convention.
Musical entertainment was furnished by the Dallas Police and Firemen’s Band, and the Oklahoma City String Band. Various other musical numbers were furnished by local talent.
The convention was honored by the presence of the following distinguished visitors: Dr. C. C. Hedges, head of the Chemical Engineering Department of the A. & M. College of Texas, College Station, Texas, and H. R. Brayton, Professor of Inorganic Chemistry at A. & M. College of Texas and Director of the Firemen’s Training School of Texas.
The high lights of the convention program were: “Practical Salvage Work” by Assistant Chief Wolff and a Salvage Company under direction of Captain McCarthy of the Dallas Fire Department. This demonstration was followed by a showing of “The Municipal Salvage Man,” a talking picture produced under the direction of the International Association of Fire Chiefs and furnished by them to the Southwest district; “A Knowledge of Chemistry an Asset to the Fireman” presented by Prof. H. R. Brayton of A. & M. College of Texas; “Preparation for Major Disasters,” prepared and presented by Chief Geo. B. Goff of Oklahoma City, Okla., and “What My State Has Done to Educate Firemen,” presented by the following:—Chief W. J. Springer of Texarkana, reporting for Arkansas; Chief S. J.Flores of Shreveport, reporting for Louisiana; Chief R. V. Miller of Clovis, reporting for New Mexico; Prof. H. R. Brayton, Director of the Texas Firemen’s Training School, reporting for Texas; and J. E. Taplin, Director of the Oklahoma Firemen’s Training School, reporting for Oklahoma. These reports showed that every state had taken some definite step toward educating and training its firemen, varying from one short annual course to four or five similar courses extending over as many years. The states of Oklahoma and Texas further reported very elaborate programs contemplated for the future. Oklahoma is just now embarking upon a statewide, all year round, supervised course of instruction which represents the cooperative effort of thirty cities who are instituting and maintaining that many drill schools in their respective departments, all following a prearranged plan and a definite course of instruction. The Agricultural and Mechanical College for the State of Texas is now completing arrangements for the second annual short course to be given under its supervision and marks the beginning of a plan similar to that now being undertaken by Oklahoma. This short course will be held on April 27, 28 and 29, and Prof. Brayton, Director of the School, is making preparation for a possible attendance of 600 firemen who are expected to participate in this work.
Other subjects presented in connection with the program were “Cooperation of Departments of Municipal Government” by Chief S. Ferguson of Fort Worth, Texas; “Necessary Qualifications for the Ideal Fireman” by Battalion Chief E. C. Kohlman of Houston, Texas; “The Utility of Small Lines” by Chief John M. Evans of New Orleans, “Lighting Equipment” by J. E. Taplin, Secretary, of Blackwell, Okla.; “Inspections” by Chief Ray Pence of Healdton, Okla. Chief Pence’s lecture was illustrated by stereopticon slides. Chief Pence attended the Los Angeles Fire College last year. He has all of the slides used in connection with the Los Angeles Fire College and is using them for instruction work wherever they may be required.
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The chief entertainment features were the stag supper and smoker, and a dinner dance. Both of these events were featured by good clean entertainment. The stag supper and smoker was followed by round table discussion under the leadership of Chief Geo. B. Goff of Oklahoma City. Okla. Some of the topics proposed and discussed were: “Simple Rules for Determining Required Engine Pressures”; “Keeping Interest in the Volunteer Fire Department”; “Inadequacy of Pension Funds”; and “Over Insurance.”
Two resolutions were adopted; one endorsed a proposed bill changing the arson law of the state of Texas so as to make this conform to what is known as the Model Arson Law. the other endorsed a bill now pending before the Texas Legislature providing for an appropriation of $45,200 for the
establishment, equipment and maintenance of a school of firemanship at A. & M. College, College Station, Texas. Telegrams expressing such endorsement and petitioning the Texas Legislature to give these bills fair consideration were dispatched to that body. Under the terms creating the school of firemanship for the state of Texas a fire department will be established and maintained on the college campus and quarters equipped as part of that institution which will be suitable for and adaptable to the needs of instruction work for the firemen of the state of Texas.
The following officers were elected for the ensuing year: Chief George B. Goff of Oklahoma City, Okla., President; Chief S. Ferguson of Fort Worth, Texas, First Vice-President; Chief R. V. Miller of Clovis, N. M., Second VicePresident; and J. E. Taplin of Blackwell, Okla., Secretary and Treasurer. The following State Vice-Presidents were elected—Chief Stuart J. Smith, Mena, Arkansas; Chief Ray Pence, Healdton, Okla.; Chief E. L. Keith, Corsicana, Texas; Chief J. C. McEachren, Haynesville, La.; Chief Bud Kielsy, Grier, N. M.
Houston, Texas, was unanimously selected as the place for the 1932 convention.
The closing feature of the convention was a trip to Fort Worth as the guest of Chief Ferguson of that city. This was the official opening of the new Central Fire Station in Fort Worth. This edifice, occupies a full block. A bountiful dinner was served, prepared in the elaborately equipped kitchen and it was served by firemen. Following dinner all attended Fort Worth’s famous Stock Show and Rodeo.