Where the Responsibility Lies
President R. M. Scott, of the National Mutual Fire Insurance Association, has asked for a receiver for that corporation. It does a considerable amount of business in Pittsburg, Kan., and other cities in that state and, as its president claims, has lost in two months of this year almost as much by fires as the average annual loss of the association. This, the officers of the company declare, is the result of the deliberate burning of their homes by the members of the association in order to collect the insurance. In fact, says President Scott, “incendiarism is becoming as common in Kansas as was bank robbery a few years ago.” For this the officers of the association assert that the “laws and the courts of Kansas are responsible. They have educated, fostered and protected a vicious and criminal element that is burning out the insurance companies and many other unoffending parties on the side. The valued policy law gives a premium to incendiaries. But the people will have to pay the bills.”
A fire-provoking combination made up of rubber and canvas belts on rubber-covered pulleys successfully started a fire in a flour mill of Knoxville, Tenn. Friction caused both rubber and pulley to go ablaze, and had it not been for the good work of the automatic sprinklers, with which the building was fully equipped, much loss would have resulted. As it was, the damage was slight.
The Grand Rapids, Mich., Plaster Company has made a donation of $100 to that city’s Firemen’s Relief Fund in recognition of the good work done by the fire department at a fire in the company’s plant.
The June fires in Birmingham. Ala., caused a total loss of $24,465.69 for 103 fires—the same number as in May, when the loss was several thousands of dollars less.