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Firefighting Methods after the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906 - Research Paper Example

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This study looks into conclusions for safety procedures, equipment, and firefighting methods. These improvements were made after the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906 with its numerous victims and destructions, some of which were man-made (due to water deficit and dynamite blasting)…
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Firefighting Methods after the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906
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Download file to see previous pages The epicenter of the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906 was taken to be Mussel Rock, some 2 miles offshore. Yet the shaking was felt along 296 miles eastward and northward of the San Andreas Fault. The loss of life from the earthquake and resulting fires was estimated to add up to 3,000 people. The only recent comparison to this at the time was the loss from the 1900 Galveston Hurricane or Flood which occurred in Texas on 08 September 1900. The Great Baltimore Fire of 1904 occurring in Baltimore Maryland on Feb 7 and 8, 1904 had stressed the need for standardized equipment and facilities such as fire hoses and hydrants to put out a fire quickly and more effectively. Yet the lack of water hydrants and water supply appeared evident in this calamity, begging for other response measures that were decidedly more dangerous. 
Early estimates put the death toll at only 375- the Government was eager to downplay the destruction as it felt that reporting more accurate figures would affect real estate values as well as impact rebuilding efforts. It is estimated that as many as 3,000 unreported deaths occurred in Chinatown alone- however, 190 deaths were also attributed to the Bay Area. Havoc and destruction were reported in Santa Rosa and San Jose. Between 227,000 and 300,000 people out of a total population of 410,000 were left homeless- most chose to shift to Berkeley and Oakland. The Presidio, Golden Gate Park, the Panhandle, Ingleside, and North Beach were covered with makeshift tents as much as two years later. It is estimated that the economic damage was around US$400 million at the time. At that time, San Francisco was the ninth largest city in terms of population and the most developed on the West Coast. The previous 60 years or so had witnessed this progress, wherein San Francisco developed into a financial, cultural and trading center, a seaport and gateway to the Pacific. But now over 80 percent of the city was lost due to the earthquake and fires. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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