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full of combustible materials, a private dwelling,
a theatre, or a ship at sea, may be
extinguished before it has time to make any
very destructive advances. But in all cases
where a fire has gained any ascendancy, and
extended over a considerable space, the use
of water after the flames have been
extinguished, continues as important as ever. The
red heat which remains on the smouldering
and heated materials, may re-ignite; and
it is to prevent this, that water is still an
imperative requisition. Moreover, water is
necessary to drench adjoining chambers, party-
walls, or adjoining houses and premises, to
prevent their liability to taking fire from
the conflagration that has already
commenced. We earnestly trust, therefore, that
the greatest unanimity will exist in all
branches of this great Fire and Water Question,
and that they will cordially receive the
new Vapour into amicable partnership and
co-operation. Fully recognising the immense
importance to the community at large, of a
body of brave, well-trained, and skilful men,
like those of the Fire Brigade, and those who
compose the staff of the Fire Escapes of the
Royal Society (and two more efficient and
admirable staffs do not exist in this country,
or any other country); we think, after Mr.
Phillips's invention has passed through every
test that can reasonably be required, that all
Fire-engines, and every Fire-escape, would do
well to have one or more of these Fire
Annihilators with them as a regular part of
their apparatus.

Of the Fire-escapes of the Royal Society, the
promptitude of their action (they are almost
always first at a fire), and the many lives
saved by them every yearnay, sometimes, in
the course of a weekwe had contemplated a
substantive account, but have been withheld
by the impossibility of doing justice to the
various patents without accurate drawings and
diagrams. However, as these are already
before the public, we may content ourselves
by saying, that, whether the Royal Society
make use of the Fire-escape invented by
Winter and Sons, by Wivell, or by Davies,
the humane exertions of the Society have
attained a success which commands the
admiration, and ensures the gratitude, of
society at large.

Respecting the annihilating properties of
water, much may be said, and will be said;
but all in vain, until the water companies are
brought to their senses, and the utter
abolition of domestic cisterns and water-butts is
effected. Without the continuous supply
systemtill all the water-pipes in all the
houses and all the streets are kept always fully
charged at high pressure, conflagrations never
will, and never can, be promptly put out by the
agency of what the penny-a-liners have lately
taken to call the "antagonistic element."
Fire engines, if not wholly laid aside, must be
only kept for exceptional cases, and the Fire
Brigadewell conducted, efficient, courageous
as it ismay, some of these days, be turned
into a corps of reserve. With the mains ever
charged, with water at high service, no
engines will be required. At the first
alarm of fire, the policeman pulls up the
fire-plugwhich should be opposite every
sixth or eighth housefixes the hose, and out
spouts a cataract in two minutes. Assistance
arrives; trails of hoses are made to lead from
the rows of plugs on either side, or in other
streets, and in five minutes a delugeand no
more fire.

For the extinguishing of fire, time is a most
important consideration. A few gallons of
water would be effective if used at once, where
thousands of gallons would effect little after
ten or fifteen minutes had elapsed. The
average time the Brigade engines take in
arriving at a fire after the first alarm is ten
minutes or a quarter of an hour, rapid as are
their movements. The Parish engines are far
more numerous, but always lastand seldom
of any use when they do come. Conceive a
parish beadle at a fire!

In some towns in the northamong others
Preston, Oldham, Ashton, Bolton, Bury, and
Manchesterthe continuous water supply
system has been in use for some time with
manifest benefit to the inhabitants. The fire
plug and jet, without engines, have, in these
places, already done great execution. Under
recent improvements, also, the same plans have
been adopted in Hamburgh; Philadelphia and
other American towns have, in their wisdom,
"done likewise." On one occasion, at Liverpool,
a fire was extinguished by a hose which
was promptly applied; a fire-engine arrived
presently after, when the engine-man, finding
the fire had been extinguished, knocked the
hoseman down, as an impertinent fellow.

In factories, and other large buildings, if
an arrangement of the above kind were
adopted, on the first alarm of fire a man
would only have to unwind a hose, and turn a
cock. This, with one of the Fire Annihilators
at hand, would probably render the building
quite secure.

These improvements and precautions carry
with them a variety of interesting
consequences,—such as the check to incendiarism,
the effect on insurances, the benefit to health
by the plug and hose being used daily in
washing the streets, and thus destroying foul
exhalations after a storm, &c.

While bringing this paper to a conclusion,
we learn that Mr. John Diggs has determined
to have a self-acting Fire Annihilator fixed in
a central position of his warehouse; so that if
a fire should burst out in the night, the flames
would melt one or other of a series of leaden
wires, any one of which being thus divided, would
liberate a heavy weight, which would instantly
run down an iron wire leading to the knob and
pin of his special Annihilatorignite the
contents of the machine, and destroy the flames
in his sugar-bakery, while he slept soundly in
his bed.