TWO “FIREPROOF” BUILDINGS BURNED.
FOR the second time in three years the Horne dry goods store at Pittsburgh, Pa., has been completely destroyed by fire—the loss on this occasion being nearly as great as on the former. What caused the fire is not the question. Fire chiefs and fire insurance men will be much more concerned to know how it was that on each occasion a “fireproof” building so easily suc_____umbed to the flames; how it was that the flames spread so rapidly from floor to floor; and how the “fireproofing” was found to be,in this case as in others, a misnomer. The same question may be asked with respect to the Washington apartment house burned on Monday last in the borough of Manhattan in this city. It is true that in the latter case it was some time before the fire department, which was engaged some eight blocks farther downtown, arrived on the scene, and that the operations of the firemen were handicapped by the lack of water which is always experienced when a big fire breaks out in that part of the city. But in the case of a “fireproof” building, such as the flathouse was reported to be, the course of the flames should not have been anything like so rapid, nor should they have spread to the same floor in the adjoining apartment house. The only thing to be said in favor of the Pittsburgh building seems to be this—that the fire was kept within it, and did not spread as on the former occasion, where only part of the structure was “fireproof,” to the adjoining property. But, even granting there was a poor water pressure, it is still a puzzle to find out where the “fireproofing” came in, or of what use it was.