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2   COMMISSION OF CONSERVATION

in direct ratio to the efficiency and sufficiency of the inspection staff made available for the field work of the Fire Inspection Department of the Board. The necessity for so close a supervision, through a large inspectorial organization, will no doubt disappear to a consider-able extent in future years, in the case of those railways whose officials and employees are genuinely impressed with the fact that the efficient prevention of fire is the highest type of business policy, and where a special organization is developed for the handling of fire protection work. Special organization for this work is almost imperative, if efficient results are to be secured, in the case of any except the smaller railway lines.

Fire protection has, in the past, been something apart from the regular routine of railway operation, and it, naturally, requires time and a distinct effort to secure complete compliance with the various instructions issued by managing officials of railway companies, under the requirements of the Board. In too many cases, the mere issuance of a circular of instructions, relative to fire protection, to railway employees may not be followed by the complete observance of these instructions, including the exercise of sufficient care in the use of fire in right-of-way clearing, and the extinguishing of fires having an accidental origin. Some provision for the following up of these instructions is needed, especially in the beginning; and in the case of a large organization, the development of a special department, or at least the assignment of one or more special inspectors, is highly desirable. In the absence of such voluntary provision by the railway company, it is obvious that a relatively large inspection staff must be provided by the Dominion or Provincial Government agency concerned, until such time as full compliance with the various requirements can be reliably secured otherwise.

There is great encouragement in the fact that, as a measure of good business policy, some of the railways are beginning to develop special organizations for the handling of fire protection work. The Canadian Northern and Canadian Pacific railways are the pioneers in this direction. In 1913 the Canadian Northern organized a department of fire protection, in charge of an expert, and the results are clearly evident in the greatly increased efficiency of the fire protection work along their lines. In the same year the Forestry branch of the Canadian Pacific railway appointed three special fire inspectors for its Western lines, and three men were similarly assigned on Eastern lines in 1914. Thus far the functions of these men have been purely of an inspectorial character, working in close co-operation with the respective operating departments. Since these two companies have fully demon-


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