Two Platoon in Effect at Kansas City
As the clock struck seven on the evening of July 20 half the men of every fire company in Kansas City, Mo., left the stations to spend twelve hours with their wives and families. For many of them it was the first time they had not been on a twenty-four hour shift since they joined the department. Fourteen of the thirty-eight companies were put on the platoon system last week ami last night the r; si of the companies were included in the pian. The men will alternate each month on night and day shifts. There are now 412 on the department payroll, half of whom are on duty all the time. Ninety-six new men have been added to the force. 1 hey were appointed pending civil service examinations. The examinations will he taken by all the firemen who have joined the force since the adoption of the new city charter in l!Hi!t. By a recent decision of the fire and water hoard those men who were appointed before that t.me will not be required to submit to the test It was a happy crowd of men who filed out of the stations that night. The new plan meant a chance to live with their families that they had never bad before. I heir joy at the change from the old system of one day a week off was plainly apparent. The men will be subject to recall to their station in case of a second alarm or other emergency. Plans have not been perfected as to how this will be done, but it is probable that some such scheme as is used in Omaha and other cities will be adopted. In these places the men are required to have a telephone in their homes and they are notified as soon as any emergency arises. The new scheme has been a success in the stations where it was adopted first. Only a few instances of tardiness in returning to duty have occurred. Chief Egner is formulating a set of rules to govern the change of shifts. It is necessary that there be no tardiness, because men must be kept on duty overtime if such occurs. The companies which started the two platoon plan are: Hose companies Nos. 1. 4. 10, 11, 16 and 20; engine companies Nos. 2, 3, 5, 6, 7. 8, 15. 17 and 25; hook and ladder companies Nos. 1. 2, 3. 4, 6 and 8; water tower No. 1; turret wagon No. 1.