Three Alarms Sent for Salvage Plant Fire
Fire from an unknown cause completely destroyed the Poppy Fund Returned Men’s Salvage plant, Toronto, Canada. The plant was of brick and wood mill type construction, built over fifty years ago, and formerly used as a plough factory. It had been occupied by the returned men for a salvage plant of waste materials. The night shift had completed work at 2 a.m. and when the watchman made his tour of inspection at 4:25 a.m. he heard a small explosion near the boiler room. He rushed from the plant as the north wing of the building was in flames, and sent in a box alarm.
When the engine companies responded on the first alarm from their quarters several blocks away, they found the entire plant in flames. District Chief Sandy Deans sent in a second alarm which brought six engine companies, three ladder companies, George Sinclair, Chief of the Department, Assistant Chief McLean, District Chief Fox, Dr. Hill, the department’s surgeon, fuel car, and an emergency car from the gas company. When those companies arrived, the fire had spread into the south wing where 150 tons of telephone books were stored. At 5:30 a.m., Chief Sinclair ordered a third alarm bringing four engine companies, and several ladder companies.
A strong gale from the east spread the fire into the three story building. Efforts were made to protect the surrounding buildings. A very heavy downpour of rain prevented hundreds of roof fires that would have normally occurred in the surrounding district due to flying embers. Ten lines of 292-inch hose were used on the south side from the railway tracks, ten lines from the west side, four from the north side, and two from the east side.
At 8 a.m. the fire was under control and at 10 a.m. the third alarm sections were sent back. The second alarm sections returned at 11:20 a.m. and the fire was struck out at 11:45 a.m.
Thirteen engine companies, six ladder companies and over one hundred men were at the fire. No one was injured. The loss is estimated at $50,000. J. K. LEE.