Wooden Garage Fire Gives the New Brunswick Men Hard Fight
A large two-story wooden garage of De Angelis Brothers & McNally, containing seventy-one automobiles, was recently destroyed by flames in New Brunswick, N. J. The building was surrounded by frame structures and the fire communicated to adjoining property and only the skill and efficient work done by Chief Harry J. Francis and the fire department prevented a much larger damage. At 6.30 a. m., the night watchman stated, the fire followed the blowing out of a gasoline torch which he was handling and the force of the explosion knocked him down. He managed to crawl to the street. Meanwhile a policeman saw the flames shooting out of the building and sent in an alarm over the Gamewell system. The wooden construction and the large open area of the building afforded opportunity for the flames to sweep through the building with great rapidity and the fire was further fed by explosions of tanks of gasoline in the automobiles. In fact, so quickly was the building enveloped in flames that only one automobile, one that stood near the door, could be saved. Chief Francis found the building a mass of fire, flames shooting across the street. The chief at once turned in a general alarm, summoning all apparatus and firemen. Forty firemen, two LaFrance steam engines, two Metropolitan engines, four hose wagons and one city service truck were present. Six hydrants, with 40 pounds pressure, were available and seven engine streams were thrown. The dimensions of the garage were 75 by 150 feet. The estimated loss on buildings was $15,000 and on contents, $95,000, the destruction of many other buildings being prevented by the efforts of the firemen. Availing themselves of the roofs of nearby structures, they fought the blaze from all sides. At about 8.30 o’clock the steam boiler in the rear of the garage blew up, endangering the firemen. Chief Francis had a narrow escape from injury by a falling wall.