Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Fire Prevention: Fire Trucks, Fire Houses, Fire Hydrant, Firemen

Feldbrunnen village 10 (2)

I found this hydrant in a field in our village near the path. I just had to take a photo. It must be something from the dark ages of fire drill I think, the antique in the meadow.

Fire in the old town of Solothurn

I will never forget this one. It was March 2011 and I had a dentist appointment. As I left the dentist to walk through town everything was closed and the firefighters were at work. The attic in one of our old town houses was on fire and it had spread to the houses next to it. These houses are protected as relics from the earlier days and had been recently renovated. You see even 7 years ago I was walking around with a camera in my bag and naturally shot a few photos. Just to add that since the roofs have long been repaired and you would never notice that there had been a fire.

Fire Truck 11.05.2018

This is the fire station of Solothurn in Switzerland. We drive past every time we go shopping. Sometimes there is something happening outside and sometimes the doors are closed. I usually take a photo when we drive past if there is anything there. Why is it that fire stations and their apparatus are always in red? Must be international.

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Fire Prevention: Fire Trucks, Fire Houses, Fire Hydrant, Firemen

Fun Photo Challenge: Fire Trucks, Fire Houses, Fire Hydrant

Fire in the old town of Solothurn

This was a live photo by me. I was on my way home from a dentist visit and found the main street was blocked off. An attic was on fire in one of our old buildings in the main street and I was there with my camera to take photos. The date on the photo is 2011, so it was 6 years ago.

Feldbrunnen to Langendorf 09.11 (2)

We drive past our local fire station when we visit the supermarket, and if you are lucky one of the engines will be parked outside the station. There are fulltime firemen in the big towns in Switzerland, but otherwise it is mainly volunteers that do the work.

Firefighter Exercise Feldbrunnen-Riedholz

In my younger and more active days I belonged to the village first aid group and once a year we would do an exercise with the village firemen. We then got a closer look at the fire trucks.

Feldbrunnen village 10 (2)

And as an extra, this old fire hydrant stands at the edge of a field in our village. I don’t know whether it is still working, but who knows.

Fun Photo Challenge: Fire Trucks, Fire Houses, Fire Hydrant

Daily Prompt: Disaster

Life can be quite disasterous, from a burnt toast to tragic event. You never know what is around the corner, and often it is not even around the corner but within reach. I have survived many disasters in my life. At the moment my share is a little extreme, but it will also pass.

Fire in the old town of Solothurn

This photo dates back to approximately March 2011 on a day like any other. I remember it well, how can you forget approaching a fire in the old town of Solothurn.

I had to visit the dentist. No-one really likes visiting the dentist, especially if he has to do things like boring, scraping, digging and disguising the pain with an injection. It was one of those visits and I was relieved to be able to leave the chair and say goodbye to everyone. That was the good side of it all, the bad side was that I had to make a new appointment for the next sitting. There are things in life that are really disasterous.

I left the dentist’s torture chamber and as I stepped into the street I smelt something in the air, which reminded me of a b-b-que, but not the nice meaty smell, more tinged with smoke and fumes. I glanced back to the dentist surgery, thinking perhaps the drill had met with a short circuit which would have postponed my next appointment, perhaps even cancelled it, but no such luck. There were no clouds of smoke pouring out of his windows

Fire in the old town of SolothurnAs I turned the corner into town I could see smoke billowing into the sky. At last the chance to capture an exclusive report with my camera which I always have in my purse As I grew closer to the smoke I reliased that the fire brigade were already there and had already constructed their ladders to the burning roof. I had missed all the action! This was pure excitement, especially as it seemed that it was the rooves of the shortly renovated old town houses. If one attic begins to burn, then it does not take long for the next attic to burn, and eventually you have a chain reaction of burning attics. The were naturally all made of wood, ideal for a nice bonfire.

I wanted a close up of the event of course, so got as close as possible. The firemen had more problems holding back the photographers than fighting the fire it seemed, but I continued undaunted. There was another problem. All those people with their telephones taking photos, I had to elbow a few out of the way, I had a real camera: not my DSLR but something better than a do-it-yourself telephone whch are really not suitable for such a spectacular fire. I shot many photos that day when my telephone rung. It was Mr. Swiss asking what had happened, as I had still not returned home.

I explained of the exciting events although there were really no real flames to be seen, just smoke. There was also a lot of water on the ground. Mr. Swiss muttered something about these things always happening to me. Of course another problem was I could not walk direct to the bus stop. I had to make a full circle around the outer walls of the town as the fire brigade had blocked all the streets with their fire extinguishing apparatus which was very annoying.

Fire in the old town of SolothurnI eventually looked back to town as I left, to make sure I was not missing anything, and could now only see the remainders of the smoke over the roof tops. Of course there was a full report in the local newspaper the next day, and even on the news on television in the evening with the headline “Fire in the Old Town of Solothurn”, but I was there. I saw it all, I was an eye witness and no-one bothered to interview me. You must realise that Solothurn was sort of founded by the Romans. It is one of the oldest towns in Switzerland. The even dug up the outlines of a Roman villa once. Now and again they find a few skeletons under the foundations of a restaurant, or on a building site.

There were three skeletons discovered just across the road to where I live in our village, but that was not such a sensation. The hanging tree was positioned where they decided to build a few hundred years later, which was a mistake of the local authorities If you want to build than be sure that it is not where they used to hand people, makes a bad impression if you want to sell the property.

Enough disaster for today, I now have to move on otherwise there will be a disaster if I do not help my feline, Tabby, to write her blog about a feline disaster.

Daily Prompt: Disaster

Daily Prompt: Hear no Evil

Tell us about a conversation you couldn’t help but overhear and wish you hadn’t.

Photographers, artists, poets: show us SECRET.

Fire in the old town of Solothurn

On 29th March 2011 I was on my way home after a visit in town to the dentist. I could smell the smoke and had to go through the main street. There is an advantage when you always have a camera with you, so I fitted in amongst the others, all busy with their mobile phones taking photos of the event.

“Looks like the fire started in the roof” said one man who had probably just left his desk in a nearby office, clicking away with his phone camera.

“Shame” said an elderly lady “those buildings are under monument protection.”

“That will cost a pretty penny to renovate” said another.

“Please get back, you are all in the way. We are putting out a fire. It could get dangerous” said a fireman who was organising a barrier.

I continued to click away with the others, hoping that the local newspaper might show a financial interest in my action photos. I only had my “normal” camera with me but saw out of the corner of my eye a very professional looking Canon camera with a long lens, so decided my photos would probably be classed as an amateur attempt.

I decided my work was done and made my way to the train stop.

“Where do you think you are going” said a fireman.”

.“To the train stop”

“Not this way Madam, this street is closed. We cannot have people walking around disturbing our work. This is not a public spectacle.”

I suppose he was right, it is not every day that we have a famous fire in the market town of Solothurn.

“You can take the back street.”

I did a detour of a few minutes along the cobbled streets. Being accident prone, I was not so keen on this as those cobbles can be a dangerous occupation walking over. I reached my station and looked back to the town to see a column of smoke still appearing over the centre of the town.

I arrived home.

“Guess what” I said to Mr. Swiss “there was a fire in town.”

“Were you hurt, did anything happen?” He always seems to think the worst.

“No, nothing happened, but I took a few photos.”

“That is in the main street, looks like the fire started in the roof” was his comment.

That evening it was even in the news on the television. Switzerland is a small country and sometimes they are glad to have something Swiss to report. The local newspapers and internet were full of photos, so I realised I had again been cheated out of a prize winning photo.

The reconstruction work on the buildings damaged is now completed, everything being restored to how it used to be.

I had a look in Internet to see if there was still some news around. It was interesting what I found and here is my translation from the original German into English.

“By the large fire in the old town, damage amounting to 5,31 milion swiss francs arose. Five attics were partially damaged. According to research, a technical defect in the electrical installation was the cause of the fire. There were no injuries to living persons.”

It seems that five ajoining buildings were affected. I also read somewhere that when the fire broke out it lasted thirty minutes until the fire brigade was called out.

“The alarm was called out by a person in a side street. This person was alone in the street and had no reason to know whether someone else had called the fire brigade.”

Apparently there were so many people taking photos and filming the event that no-one thought about calling the fire brigade. You see how cool and relaxed we Swiss are, even in the face of danger.

Daily Prompt: Hear no Evil

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