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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 90.djvu/223

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Popular Science Mo?7fhIy

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��Afraid of Fire? Then Cany a Pocket Fire -Escape

THE traveling man comes in for full consideration from the inventors and experimenters of the day. Whether it is because he is so ubiquitous, or because he is such a necessary evil, something new is constantly being placed on the market for his convenience or to protect him from danger. This time it is a pocket fire-escape. With it he can get out of a burning hotel or other building before the swiftest fireman can get a chance to make a noble and spectacular rescue.

All that he has to do is to open his suitcase, take out the 1 aluminum box that look like a soap-box, open it and attach the end of the coiled steel wire cable to any available hook or loop it around the bed-post or other piece of heavy fur- niture, fasten around his body the strap and "seat" arrange- ment which is part of the device, and then hop out of the window. The casing containing the steel cable is provided with an indicator on which is clearly marked the weights which the cable will sustain. This indicator is connected with a control which adjusts the mechanism in such a way that the rate of descerft is governed by the weight sustained. For instance if a man weighs two hundred pounds, he turns the indicator until it points to that number and his drop is no faster than it would be if he weighed only one hundred pounds and turned the indi- cator to one hundred. In this way the shock of a sudden drop is avoided, although you can go down twenty stories in one minute. The limit of the carrying capacity of a one hundred and fifteen-foot cable is two hundred pounds, but another size is manu- factured which will sustain four hundred pounds.

You can go down over the porch or from a steep roof, and if you should become un- conscious from fright you are still safe. Besides being of value to the traveler, it would seem to be a convenience to firemen, also. Even children can use it.

���The device consists of a coiled steel wire cable and a strap and seat arrangement. The rate of descent is governed by the weight of the person

��How a Whale Fought a Submarine and Sank Her

THE vessel "IT'. 5." was recently sunk by a submarine without warning and within sight of the coast-line of Florida. The vessel was damaged so badly that it sank within ten minutes, its crew barely escaping with their lives. A monster whale on coming to the surface, came up against the sharp keel of the vessel, and it must have received a disagreeable cut, for it im- mediately attacked the boat and with one whack of its tail stove a large hole in the vessel's bottom. The water filled the boat to its deck in less than ten minutes and it went to the bottom almost immediately.

While this matter cannot be directly traced to any warring nation, it is possible that the whale learned its bad habits from the manner in which other neutral vessels have been sunk in the last few vears.

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