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THE RAILWAY FIRE SITUATION   57

The construction of fire-guards is not required where, on account of recent ploughing or the presence of a non-combustible crop, there is no danger of fire spreading and doing damage.

It is clearly understood that nothing contained in this letter shall be construed as in the slightest degree affecting the statutory responsibility of the company for the payment of damage claims on account of fires.

It is also understood that the above modifications of the requirements contained in letter of May 24, 1913, are experimental, and that requirements as to fire-guard construction for the season of 1914 will depend upon the showing made in connection with the requirements for the current season.

The forms to be used in presenting the above matter for the signature of land owners or occupants shall be subject to the approval of the Chief Fire Inspector. Such forms, after signature, shall be avail-able for examination by any authorized officer of the Board.

The graphic chart, in triplicate, comprising the annual report, required by letter of May 24, 1913, to be submitted not later than November 1, 1913, shall, as to cultivated lands, indicate lands fire-guarded, lands on which fire-guarding is stated by the owner or occupant to be unnecessary, lands on which permission to construct fire-guards has been refused by owner or occupant, lands exempted because fire-guard ploughing is unnecessary on account of recent ploughing, the presence of non-combustible crop, climatic conditions, or other reason, if any, why fire-guards have not been ploughed.

Your attention is directed to the fact that a strict enforcement by the company of Regulation 13 of General Order 107, with regard to the reporting and extinguishing of fire by all employees, is desirable in the prairie sections, and would undoubtedly not only reduce damage claims, but also make possible some relaxation of the requirements as to the ploughing of fire-guards.

The issuance and posting of full instructions to employees, in printed form, as required by Regulation 14 of General Order 107. is necessary in this connection. This action has not yet been generally taken in the prairie section, by the companies concerned.

In view of the above modifications, supplementary requests for exemption from fire-guard construction may be submitted at any time prior to October 1, 1913.

Yours very truly

(Signed)   CLYDE LEAVITT

Chief Fire Inspector, B.R.C.

 

The above arrangement worked out satisfactorily during the autumn of 1913, and very much more work was done in connection with the fire-guarding of grain stubble lands adjacent to railway lines than had ever been the case in previous years. No complaints regarding the arrangement were received from any source, thus proving the justice of the assumption that the requirement for the fire-guarding of grain


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