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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 90.djvu/727

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Popular Science Monthly

��711

��Fire-Escape Chutes for School Children

SOME of the California schools are equipped with novel fire escapes, which are not only a safe- guard, but afford the children as much amusement as a regular play- ground equipment. One of these fire-escapes in Tropico, near Los Angeles, consists of several long sheet-metal chutes, reinforced with angle iron and secured to the walls of the building. They extend from an iron platform on the second floor, which leads from the main corridor. Separate chutes are provided for the boys and girls. The teachers encourage the use of the slides as an amusement to accustom the chil- dren to them. Each slide ends in a slight upward curve, to check the momen- tum of the descent. At the point where the children reach the ground a pile of loose sand breaks the fall. In Venice, California, a spiral chute is employed, which is enclosed in a cylindrical metal casing. This is en tered from a platform leading from the upper story. Like the straight slide, it is used as an amusement device by the pupils. A local hospital makes use of one of the same design.

����The chute is used as an amusement device during recess periods in order to accustom the children to it

��Instead of backing up against the curb, the truck draws up lengthwise and is loaded from an overhead movable beam

��Loading a Truck Without Interfering with Traffic

THE novel motor-truck loading device shown in the accom- panying illustration makes it possible for a vehicle to be loaded across the sidewalk without interfering with pedestrian traffic. This is accomplished b y means of a movable beam mounted on rollers run- ning on the side members of the framework, which extends out beyond the curb line at points about twelve feet above the ground. A conventional differen- tial block and fall mounted on rollers on the movable beam is used to pick up ^the lengths of steel shown in the picture. When each piece of steel is attached to the block and fall it is hoisted up to clear the top of the motor-truck cab if it is to be loaded on the side of the truck farthest from the curb. It is then pulled out from the yard at the point of loading to directly above the truck body by means of a guy rope and lowered.

This method not only eliminates interference with pedestrian traffic but with vehicular travel as well, for the truck draws up to the curb lengthwise instead of backing up in the usual manner.

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