Firegeezer recently posted a question for everyone to help out answer about the safety of Fire Poles. I am not trying to steal this thunder, so please visit the post to see the exact question and offer an answer if you have one.
Actually, what I wanted to show was a Sliding Chute. This slide was actually recently placed in a BRAND NEW firehouse in Dale City located in Prince William County, Virginia. VAFireNews.com has the story and many great photos of the inside and outside of the station. The really cool thing is that not only does the firehouse have a fire pole and a sliding chute, they also have plaques explaining the history of them. See what I mean below. Click here or on the images for the entire photo story.
Does anyone else know of other firehouses with sliding chutes in them? Photo evidence would be nice!
And be sure to check out the original post over at FireGeezer.
The plaque at the sliding chute reads:
Prior to the invention of the slide pole, stairs and sliding chutes were common in fire stations. The chutes allowed the firefighters to quickly get to the horses and wagons, which were housed in a stable below the sleeping quarters in the hayloft.
The horses would try to climb the stairs to the hayloft, so designers responded with spiral staircases. While hard for the horses to climb, these types of stairs were slow for the firefighters to descend.
The sliding chute was eventually replaced by the sliding pole, however the chute remains a quick and safe way to get to the apparatus from upper floors of the fire station.