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A Display of Motor Fire Apparatus.

25th April 1912, Page 14
25th April 1912
Page 14
Page 15
Page 14, 25th April 1912 — A Display of Motor Fire Apparatus.
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A Colliery Rescue Mator Equipment—Plant for the War Office.—Five New Models.

Probably the most comprehensive demonstration of motors for firefighting purposes which has as yet been held by a British manufacturer was that which a number of tire-brigade chiefs and Government officials were invited to witness, at Walthamstow, on Friday last, by Messrs. Henry Simonis and Co. A range of five first-class machines, each representing a different type, was shown, and some of them were operated so as to prove their capabilities to perform the service required of them. All these units will shortly be delivered to their respective purchasers : The Walthamstow Fire Brigade ; The War Department; The Newport (Mon.) Town Council ; the Monmouthshire Collieries Rescue Assocation ; and the Auckland (New Zealand) Fire Brigade.

For Rescue Work in Mines.

The vehicle which Messrs. Simonis have built for the Monmouthshire Collieries .Rescue Association is of special interest because, we believe, it is the first one to be ordered under the requirements of the recently-passed Mines Act, which calls for the compulsory provision in every colliery district of portable apparatus, which must be available for use in every part of the district, for rescue w, ex in case of fire or explosion.

i:his new machine is not really a motor fire-engine, but the conditions of its service are so closely allied to those of fire engines that the purchasing Association decided to place the order w:th a firm of fire engineers rather than to place themselves solely in the hands of a motor manufacturer, who might not necessarily possess certain special knowledge which was considered necessary.

Carries Eight Sets of Oxygen

The machine is intended to carry men and their complete equipment of rescue gear, as well as a quantity of fire-fighting apparatus for use in the mines. The chassis is one of the 50 h.p. Commer-Simonis " type, and is capable of taking a gross load of 21 tons at a speed of Ns m.p.h. ; it embodies all the characteristic features of that make. The bodywork, as may be seen from one of the accompanying illustrations, resembles that of a fire tender, and provides seating accommodation for eight men, in addition to the driver and the officer in charge. The rescue apparatus for each man is carried in the box below him, in such a manner that as he descends from the machine he can readily take it out and put it on his head or shoulders as required, without any loss of time. In the centre of the body, between the two rows of apparatus boxes, there is a compartment for the storage of oxygen cartridges. There are eight sets of rescue apparatus, each with three charges of oxygen. The three rearmost compartments of the main body are reserved for the ambulance equipment, and this consists of a reviving apparatus, two collapsible stretchers and the usual ambulance outfit. There is also a smoke helmet and an air pump with 180 ft. of tubing.

Canaries a Part of the Equipment.

Another compartment is reserved for the fire-fighting plant, and this consists of 120 ft. of delivery hose, two lengths of suction hose, a dam, branehpipes, spanners, and other accessories which are to be used in connection with a double-barrelled hand pump, which is normally carried on the back footboard of the machine. The long boxes under the running boards are filled with various miners' tools, tools for the use of the driver, spare hand lamps, etc., whilst the usual cage of canaries is carried just behind the driver.

Two systems of lighting are provided, and these are acetylene and electric ; the generator for the latter installation is mounted on the chassis and is belt driven from one of the gearshafts. It is interesting to note that the back wheels are shod with Continental triple, solid, diagonally-ribbed tires.

The whole outfit is most complete, and the Association which will shortly take it over needs only the addition of a motor pump to put it level with the best volunteer fire brigade in the country. There is, of course, every likelihood of a big demand for this model.

A Pumping Set for the W.O.

One of the machines shown by Messrs. Simonis was a portable motor fire-engine intended for use in one of the Government factories in connection with the War Office. It is a man-handled machine so far as concerns its transportation from place to place, but its two-stage centrifugal pump is direct-coupled to a 50 h.p. Commer-Car engine. The whole outfit is mounted upon a steel frame which is provided with ixles, wheels, draught bars, etc. It is capable of throwing 320 gallons of water per minute.

Auckland's New Turntable Escape.

The Auckland fire brigade will shortly be the proud possessors of a fine electrically-operated turntable fire escape and water tower. This machine, when demonstrated at the Simonis works, created a remarkable impression. It extends to a maximum height of 87 ft., and is provided with both electrical and hand-operated means of elevation ; arrangements are also made for the adjustment of the ladder for " plumb " laterally independent of the surface of the road. The propelling motors are enclosed within the front-wheel hubs, and they receive current from an 80cell battery, which is placed under a bonnet. Each motor is capable of exerting 35 h.p. and the battery has a capacity of 146 ampere-hours, and can operate the machine, at a speed of 20 m.p.h., within a radius of 25 miles of the charging plant. The ladder is mounted on a turntable and may either be used as a leaning escape, or as a water tower. livery possible precaution against accident in operation has been taken, and there is a number of very simple but effective safety devices embodied in the machine.

Walthamstow's Pump.

The largest machine yet. built, jointly, by Messrs. Simms and Commercial Cars, Ltd., is the new 70-80 h.p. motor pump for the WalLhamstow Fire Brigade. The engine has four separate cylinders, each 140 mm. in diameter, and a piston-stroke of 190 mm. It is capable or developing from 70 h.p. to 80 h.p. at its maximum speed of 1400 r.p.m. The usual Commer-Car practices have been followed in the general construction. The threestage centrifugal pump is driven through gears of equal size, and it may he controlled from the back of the machine. The pump's capacity is 450 gallons per minute, and during the demonstration, it showed its ability to throw a ti in. jet against a pressure of 120 lb. per souare inch. It also carries a firstaid apparatus of 30-gallons capacity. which may either be operated by the pressure of compressed gas or coupled, through the medium of a three-way fitting, to the hydrant.

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