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Fire Prevention

01. Fire prevention is every body's job.

02. Over the years the primary objective of the fire service has been the control and extinguishment of unfriendly fires. Although this will continue to be a major function of the fire service, there is increasing emphasis on fire prevention as an objective of the fire service's efforts and on making use of fire fighting personnel for fire preventive duties.

03. In the modern fire science, preventing the outbreak of fire and preventing the serious spread of fire are considered equally as essential to public safety as proficiency in fire fighting procedures.

04. Historically, as early as 300 B.C. the Romans established a Fire Department, composed primarily of slaves. The program was un-successful and the department was converted into a paid force in the year 6 A.D. This proved successful. By 26 A.D. the full time force in the Rome was grown to 7,000 men.

05. The firemen of the Rome patrolled the streets in their efforts to bring about proper fire prevention procedures. They were granted the authority to administer corporal punishment to offenders of fire codes and were provided with rods for use in administering such punishment.

06. According to history, in the year 872, a bell was used in Oxford, England, to signal the time for the extinguishment of all fires. From this appropriate time for "covering" of fires developed the Norman words couvre feu (cover fire), which later became the English word curfew.

07. In the year 1189 the Mayor of London ordered that "no house should be built in the city but of stone and they must be covered with slate or tiled". This was not fully implemented and the importance was realized during a fire occurred in the year 1212, claiming 3,000 lives.

08. In 1666, a major fire struck London. This fire referred to as the Great Fire of London, burned for four days and destroyed five sixths of the city, yet only six deaths occurred. This was because of adopting of appropriate fire preventive measures, which had slowed the spread of fire.

09. In Indian History Kautilya or Chanakya, in his famous book 'Arthashastra', has dedicated two chapters on fire prevention. He has suggested severe punishment like fine, imprisonment and capital punishment for violation of fire preventive measures. He suggested to keep, two pitcher full of water, one rope, one ladder, one sickle, in each hut as fire preventive and fire fighting equipment. He also suggested to store water, in bigger pitchers, at the junction of all the roads.

10. The method suggested and enforced by Kautilya was simple. In case of fire use stored water from the pitchers. If fire is spreading use the sickle to cut that portion. If the fire is still spreading tie the rope to the hut and pull it down. Use ladder for climbing and pushing the huts to make a fire gap. Even then, if the fire is beyond control, use the water from the road junctions to put out the fire. In his opinion fire destroys a nations economy, to prevent it enforce fire preventive measures, strictly