HISTORIC FIRES

historic fire scene photos from many years ago

This was a real dandy. The Fire Alarm office calltaker and dispatcher was the late Dick Hyland. You can also hear Bob Phelan as well as Matt Tomlin briefly on the radio and Al Andersen was the switchboard guy that handled most of the radio stuff. I took this job in. What a night this was! The DDC was Ed Altman way before his commissioner days and the responding District Chief was Louis Galante (which explains why this wasn’t a 5-11). Some other voices you may find familiar Jim Corbett on truck 12, Bob Welch as “3a”, Bill O’Boyle on Squad 1.

I’m sure there are many more to be recognized upon further review. This fire turned into a real spectacle. It ignited a scrapyard at 14th & State that went to a box and it also burned up El ties along the tracks for about 2 blocks. To top it off Snorkel 1 got stuck in the partially raised position and members had to be rescued via ground ladder as the radiant heat was getting brutal. After the building collapsed they found a guy who was sleeping in a vehicle next to the fire building who had to be extricated with a hurst tool since the car was squashed by the falling wall.

I was standing too close at the time of the collapse and as I was running saw a member get knocked down by flying bricks. I believe he broke his leg … a narrow miss for me.  This was a real all time classic job. I will never forget it.

Steve Redick

 

massive fire in Chicago

Steve Redick photo

massive fire in Chicago

Steve Redick photo

massive fire in Chicago

Steve Redick photo

massive fire in Chicago

Steve Redick photo

massive fire in Chicago

Steve Redick photo

January 2, 1962. Western at Harrison in Chicago @ 8:30 am. Fire was in the 3-story Acorn Luggage factory and went to a 4-11. The first image is looking North towards the old Crane Junior College (high school still there but the building you see in the image is gone). You can also see the old Chicago Stadium off in the far distance. Second image looking across Western to the Southeast. Final image showing Snorkels working in the alley or what today would be called the “C” side. The truck company parked on Western looks to be 19 and I am only going off of what the number looks like on the door. Our staff historians will correct me if I’m wrong. If you look closely in the background, you can see the huge Phillips 66 neon sign that used to sit over the Eisenhower and the old Harris Bank Christmas billboard on top of one of the exposure buildings. Hope you enjoy this for #throwbackthursday. Eric Haak

vintage 4-11 alarm fir in Chicago 1962

January 2, 1962. Western at Harrison @ 8:30 am. Fire was in the 3-story Acorn Luggage factory and went to a 4-11. Eric Haak collection

vintage 4-11 alarm fir in Chicago 1962

January 2, 1962. Western at Harrison @ 8:30 am. Fire was in the 3-story Acorn Luggage factory and went to a 4-11. Eric Haak collection

vintage 4-11 alarm fire in Chicago 1962

January 2, 1962. Western at Harrison @ 8:30 am. Fire was in the 3-story Acorn Luggage factory and went to a 4-11. Eric Haak collection

This is the radio traffic from a 3-11 alarm with a disaster plan 3 at 6531 Lowe in Chicago (2/25/79). This occurred while my dad was chief in the 12th battalion … first thing in the morning. The chief he normally relieved, Bill Foran was acting in the big buggy and had not yet been relieved so he was responding as the division marshal. The captain of truck 20, who had some classic radio replies was Richard Fitzpatrick. The voice of the englewood office was Harry Haddon back in his heyday. This building had super long hallways, masks were barely in use at this time and the people were hanging out all over the place. This was a real dandy. Steve Redick

historic Chicago fire scene photo

Steve Redick photo

historic Chicago fire scene photo

Steve Redick photo

I thought I would share these vintage images from a 3-11 alarm on May 14, 2000.  The fire was at 71st and Wabash in Chicago and the images were scanned from original negatives that I own.  The images were taken by a Sun-Times photographer but I do not have a name.  They were in very poor shape and I had to spend a lot of time editing out the scratches, however you can see that I did not get to all of them yet.  Eric Haak

vintage fire scene photo from Chicago

Eric Haak collection

vintage fire scene photo from Chicago

Eric Haak collection

firefighter getting oxygen at fire scene

Eric Haak collection

Eric Haak collection

vintage Chicago firefighters at fire scene

Eric Haak collection

vintage fire scene photo from Chicago

Eric Haak collection

vintage fire scene photo from Chicago

Eric Haak collection

vintage fire scene photo from Chicago

Eric Haak collection

vintage Chicago firefighter at fire scene

Eric Haak collection

firefighter getting oxygen at fire scene

Eric Haak collection

Chicago FD Commissioner James Joyce

Eric Haak collection

vintage fire scene photo from Chicago

Eric Haak collection

Some shots from a 4-11 at Hastings and Wolcott in Chicago. It was a barrel works as I recall and the embers from this drifted a block away and burned out some rooms on the top floor of an occupied apartment building. I forget it’s exact location. We ran down there just as the companies arrived. It may have been a box or maybe they just grabbed units from the 4-11. Truck 1 was used here with their brand new E-One rig with the pre-piped waterway. This was November 1989.

Steve Redick

vintage Chicago fire scene photo

Steve Redick photo

vintage Chicago fire scene photo

Steve Redick photo

vintage Chicago fire scene photo

Steve Redick photo

vintage Chicago fire scene photo

Steve Redick photo

vintage Chicago fire scene photo

Steve Redick photo

vintage Chicago fire scene photo

Steve Redick photo

This was an interesting fire. December 1989, a 2-11 at 1705 N Talman. I happened on this in the early stages. Occupants still in the exposure building were just exiting out the back under heavy fire conditions. They lost water for some reason and the back end of the two  dwellings really took off. I helped the engineer of 35 make another hydrant down the block after things went sour. After all was said and done I smelled something burning and discovered my knit hat was burning as was my hair from a flying ember!

Steve Redick

heavy flames at night fire scene

Steve Redick photo

heavy flames at night fire scene

Steve Redick photo

heavy flames at night fire scene

Steve Redick photo

fireman on ladder at house fire

Steve Redick photo

heavy flames at night fire scene

Steve Redick photo

heavy flames at night fire scene

Steve Redick photow56