THE LATEST WEEKLY BUDGET OF FIRE DEPARTMENT NEWS
The fire loss in Denver in January was $52,570. The department responded to Ill alarms during the month.
The salary of Chief Campbell, of the Portland, Ore., fire department, has been increased to $250 per month.
The firemen’s pension fund of the Chicago fire department has received a check for $1,000 as a gift from the executive committee of the charity ball.
The Ahrens-Fox l ire Engine Company, of Cincinnati, O., has been awarded the contract for a third-size “Continental” steamer for Woodbury, N. J.
The lire department at Chicopee, Mass., is to be strengthened by the addition of a new up-todate motor truck, more firemen and another lire station.
An act to enable exempt firemen to share in the benefits of firemen’s relief associations has been presented in the New Jersey Senate by Senator trince. The measure has the indorsement of the State convention of firemen.
Philip Andrew .dyers, millionaire crief of the Ashland, O., fire department, resigned recently at a banquet which he gave 125 members of the citizens relief fire company and Ashland officials, be has led the Ashland fire fighters for 28 years.
The report of Chief C. K. Foster shows that during 1910 the Astoria, Ore., fire department responded to 81 alarms; loss, $64,500; insurance, $18,500. The chief recommends more fire alarm boxes, better water protection and laws relating to building code, fire limits, theaters and the storing of combustibles.
Chief of the Fire Department John Sweeney has completed his report giving the losses by lire in Green Hay, Wis., during 1910, and Ihe statement shows the total loss amounted to $18,950.88. There were 120 fires. The total loss paid by the companies was $48,441.88, leaving $599 loss with no insurance to cover the damage.
New York City has contracted with the Webb Motor Fire Apparatus Company for eight inotot high-pressure wagons, two motor lire engines and two motor 75-foot aerial trucks—total cost, $76,000. Newark. N. J., and Pawtucket, R. I., nave each contracted with the Webb Company .or a motor lire engine. D. A. Woodhouse, of this city, represented the manufacturers.
The city council of Columbus has prepared an ordinance governing the storage and handling of gasoline and other explosives, and has informed the Ohio Inspection Bureau that if it will guarantee a reduction in the rates on business risks in ihe downtown districts that the ordinance will be passed. A revision of the schedule was stopped some time ago when a similar ordinance was lost.
The Mission High School was temporarily the largest fire station in the world recently when 328 members of the San Francisco, Cal., fire department took the required civil service examination to qualify them on the eligible list for lieutenants. Parked outside were eight large automobiles belonging to the city, ready to make a dash for the scene in case the services of the fire laddies were suddenly needed.
Out of nearly 6,000 fires in Chicago more than one-sixth were due to the careless use of the “criminal match.” The campaign against the latter, which is now assuming considerable force and proportions, will be pushed vigorously until none lint safety matches can he obtained in this country. Even then, burning matches carelessly thrown away after use will continue to he responsible for many fires.
The annual report of the lire department at Wenatchee, Wash., showed that during the past year there were nine day and six niglu calls for the department. The fire loss was $87,827, with $1,500 insurance. The cost of the department, exclusive of the paid men, was $388.95, an average cost of $32.41 per month. The receipts of the department from various sources, including donations, city payments, etc., amounted to $1,114.80. The department has $227.36 in the treasury.
The latest annual report of Chief J. C. Dunn, of the Rutland, Vt., fire department, shows that the payroll during the year amounted to $8,415.70. The total expense of the department was $12,804.24, of which $1,541.32 went for the air compressor to operate the fire alarm whistle. One thousand feet of new hose was bought at a cost of $1,026.28. The other expenses included insurance, feed for the horses and other similar items. Public Safety Commissioner Patch recommends that a lot of rewiring he done in the fire alarm system next spring. Chief Dunn compliments the firemen on the interest shown in the service during 1910.
In view of the near approach of the fifth anniversary of the San Francisco conflagration, April 18, figures as to the extent of the rebuilding there will he of interest. The total number of buildings destroyed was 28,188, of which 24,671 were frame. Conservative contractors estimated that it would require ten years to replace the destroyed buildings, even if ample material and labor were available. The records show that up to the end of December 16,951 frame buildings had been erected, or 68.7 per cent, of those destroyed, and 2,086 buildings of slow-burning construction, or 59.3 per cent., making a total of 62.8 per cent, of the buildings destroyed.
Franklin H. Wentworth, of Boston, secretary of the National Fire Protection Association, in an address before the Buffalo Credit Men’s Association on February 15, said that the national lire waste was one of the most serious problems confronting the country, amounting to $250,000,000 yearly. This fearful loss is beginning to manifest its impoverishing blight, he said. Among the remedies recommended was to drill fire departments until they knew every inch of their towns, to keep down rubbish, to prohibit the shingle roof, to forbid the careless handling of matches, to use only safety matches, and, above all, to awaken the public mind against the popular fallacy that not the insurance companies, but the insured pay the fire losses.
Five hundred and ninety-five companies which hold membership in the Pennsylvania Firemen’s Association and 1,600 individual members of the association are to he invited to attend the annual convention of the association, which will he held next September in York. As the convention roll of delegates approximates nearly 2,500 men alone, it can he seen that York is going to be invaded by a mighty host. The local committees are deep in the work of preparing for the convention. Every hotel and hoarding house within a radius of 20 miles has been canvassed with a view of securing accommodations and reduced rates for that week. The committee expects to see more than 100 fire companies in the parade, each with a hand of music. This, it is expected, will be the largest parade ever held in York.
Further private exhibitions and runs of the fire apparatus have been prohibited by Commissioner Walclo, of New York, in an order issued as a sequel to the recent trial of Captain O’Connor, after such an exhibit, in which the former chaplain of the department, T. Le Baron Johnson, and Rufus Gaynor had figured prominently among the sightseers. The order declares that all passes or permits for exhibitions of fire apparatus issued prior to January 1. 1911, are rescinded and that henceforth no exhibitions will he made except by a written order either from the commissioner or the chief of the department and after the telegraph bureau has been notified. ‘This will do away with the little fire exhibition parties hastily arranged for the benefit of some favored persons that they may entertain their friends.
With tlie idea of throwing an additional safeguard around the lives of firemen and of reducing the danger of fire in buildings, Thomas Dies, commissioner of public utilities, grounds and buildings, at Memphis, Term., will have embodied in the new building ordinance a clause prohibiting manufacturing concerns, using electricity for motive power, from leaving a building unoccupied without having turned the current off from all wires located therein. The need for such an ordinance was impressed upon Mr. Dies by the tire of Tuesday night, when the local firemen were impeded in lighting the flames by a number of live wires. “There is no reason why a switch could not he located near the door by means of which the last person leaving the building might cut off the electric current within the building,” said Mr. Dies. “It not only makes the fighting of a fire less hazardous, but in so doing would undoubtedly have the effect of reducing the amount of loss, to say nothing of eliminating the possi bility of a building catching fire from defective wiring when there was nobody in the building.”
The city of Lodi, Cal., has decided to place fire plugs at the ends of all the alleys where the mains terminate, which are called “dead ends.” A point that has not become public is the fact that in putting in the city waterworks and city sewers they have been made of sufficient size to accommodate a city of at least 10,000 inhabitants. The city fathers are confident of Lodi’s growth and have planned accordingly. The trustees lately have been in constant communication with the board of fire underwriters, who have outlined a simple plan of tire apparatus and a pressure system which the lire companies assure the board will reduce the insurance paid yearly by the citizens of at least $3,000. Under the advice of the underwriters, the trustees are now working to put in a system that will meet with approval and warrant the reduction.
Despite the fact that the efforts of the Franklin Engine Company, of Rahway, N. J., to have the common council purchase a new fire engine after the company had raised $1,000 toward the purchase price were in vain, the company has closed a deal for the purchase of the engine now in their possession which was leased from the American La France Company, of F’lmira. N. Y., pending the purchase of a new engine. The company secured the consent of the various contributors of the $1,000 fund to use the money in purchasing the engine on hand, and that sum, which was refunded by the city after the plans had been balked, was turned over to the company at its New York office by representatives of the Franklin Company. There was about $800 due the Elmira concern for the rent of the engine at $50 per juontli, and the company allowed the local fireman a big bargain in making the purchase. The balance of the purchase price will soon he raised by the Franklin Engine Company. The engine was placed in first-class condition last summer at the factory of the Elmira concern. A check for $100 has been received.
The Providence (R. I.) Journal of a recent date says: “The announcement last week that the Pawtucket council committee on fire department had made a contract with the Webb F’ire Apparatus Company of St. Louis for supplying this city with a motor-driven fire pump was the signal for expressions of disapproval from persons who for more than two years past have been trying to have the city spend money to repair the two old steam fire engines which it owns. These persons have attempted to prove that the action thus far taken was illegal. It is explained that the purchase cf this machine has depended altogether on the question of whether the city council would make an appropriation of $1,000, which was needed. Of the $11,00 appropriated last year for motor trucks for the fire department $3,500 was used for the machine that is now in use by the chief of the department. This left but $8,000, and the price of the machine which the committee decided was best fitted for the use of this city was $9,000. At the last meeting of the city council the $1,000 needed was given, and Mayor Easterbrooks affixed his signature to the resolution, thus giving his approval of the expenditure of the money as well as approval of the purchase of this machine.”
The fire commissioners of Springfield, Mass., have just contracted with the Knox Automobile Company for two new automobile hose wagons similar in design to the electric hose wagon which was delivered a few weeks ago. The new apparatus will he the largest and most powerful gasoline machines of the kind ever turned out by the Knox Company. The new machines are to be delivered within 90 days, by which time it is hoped that the new fire headquarters building on Water street will be ready for service. When placed in commission one of the wagons will be located at the new fire station, or at the Margaret street station, and the other will be put temporarily at the Chestnut street station. The new machines will he slightly longer than the electric truck, the length of the wheel base being 149 inches. They will weigh 6,000 pounds each, and will be capable of maintaining a speed of 25 miles an hour. The front tires will be 3 feet in diameter by 4 inches in thickness. The rear wheels will have dual tires of the same size as the front tires. The main frames are to be of 5-inch rolled diamond steel. The engines are to be of 48 horsepower, and are similar to the motive power on the high pressure fire engine, which was built by the Knox people for the New York fire department about two years ago. There are to he four cylinders placed vertically in the forward part of the cars. The cars will have three speeds forward and one backward. The gasoline tanks will be over the engine and directly behind the drivers’ seats.