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This annual report from Fort William was typical of the early reports, as it is brief and focuses on losses due to fire, the Department’s equipment, and needed renovations or changes at the stations.

Fort William Fire Department Annual Report 1918

Fort William Fire Department Annual Report 1918 pg 2

The text of this report reads as follows:

"To the Chairman & Members, Fire, Water & Light Committee.
    I beg to report as follows on the operations of the Fire Department for the past year 1918:

    During the year the Department responded to 158 alarms, used 12,600 feet of 2 1/2 [inch] hose, 1,900 feet chemical hose, and 70 -3 gallon hand chemicals.
    The total insurance involved on property endangered [$]3,561,803.00.
    The total loss on property for the year $73,306.55.
    Of the fires during the year one at the Canada Car plant and one in a derrick scow belonging to the Great Lakes Company were responsible for the greater portion of the loss. These two fires account for $42,453.00 of the loss.
    During the year 300 feet of hose was disposed of to the Works Department and 500 feet of new hose purchased. At a recent fire this year at the Superior Elevator, 150 feet of hose was destroyed when an explosion took place burying the hose so that it could not be extricated. and it will be necessary to purchase 500 feet this year to keep our supply. Last year we disposed of one old team of horses and replaced them with a young team. We have one team at the present time that should be replaced by a new team.
    The fire apparatus and equipment are all in good order with the exception of one 28 foot ladder, which was broken at the Superior Elevator fire. The material for this ladder has been ordered and it will be replaced on the apparatus in a few days. We also lost one play pipe and two axes at this fire, but expect to recover these when the grain has been removed.
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    The fire stations will require considerable paint this year as no money was spent during the war, paint material being very high. The roof of the Pacific Avenue Station has been giving trouble and it will likely be necessary to tar and gravel it this coming summer, we will also have to make considerable repairs to the south half of the Central Fire Station roof, this is a galvanized iron roof and it is rusting badly.
    During the past year we have made a great number of inspections of the business places and are still continuing these inspections, in all cases our recommendations have been complied with. These inspections I believe have helped to keep down the loss.
    It is gratifying to be able to report that no loss of life occurred during the year from fire, also, that no member of the Department met with any accident other than minor cuts from broken glass. The horses of the Department also coming through the year without any serious mishap.
    In a former report I asked that the heating plants at the Central an Brown Street Stations be changed to steam heating, both these plants are inadequate and expensive. I did not push the matter during the war as steam heating material was very high and I would respectfully suggest that this matter be looked into and if it is found that prices have come down, that the work be undertaken if possible.
    For the past number of years, that is to say, during the war, I have been asking for an automobile to take the place of the small car which I have driven for the last five years. The purchase of this car has been put off by different committees from year to year with verbal promises for the future. The war time policy of economy being cited on each occasion, so that it became necessary for me to fall in line and acquiesce, but Gentlemen, during all this time I have been made the butt of all the jokers in the City over the present car, and I would respectfully suggest that you give this matter your serious consideration at an early date.
    In conclusion I desire to thank the members of last year's Committee for their hearty support during the year.
    I also wish to thank the Officers and Members of the Department for the cheerful manner in which they discharged their duties during the past year.
    Respectfully submitted, A.D Cameron, Chief of Fire Department."
Handwritten: "A further report will be found attached

For an example of a report later in Fort William's history, click here for the 1961 Fire Department Annual Report.

City of Thunder Bay Archives Series Number: 16
TBA: 208-12