VINTAGE FIRE ESCAPE
This is a rare Longworth Safety Automatic Fire Escape made by Safety Automatic Fire Escapes Limited (Fire Engineers) of Blackpool, Lancashire, England, Circa 1930s.
This type of fire escape was used between 1930-1963 in most Blackpool Hotels but are very hard to come by nowadays. The front of the cast metal casing is printed with instructions for use as follows "THROW REEL FROM WINDOW. ADJUST LIFE BELT ROUND BODY AND UNDER THE ARMS. CLIMB THROUGH THE WINDOW. YOU WILL THEN BE SAFELY AND AUTOMATICALLY LOWERED TO THE GROUND. ASCENDING BELT CAN BE USED FOR NEXT PERSON" The front of the metal casing is also printed with the following patents - British Patents 373728 (1933), 487526 (1939) French Patent 835258 (193?) and a South Africian Patent 337/1938 granted in 1938. Above the housing the fire escape has the serial number 1445956S.
The Fire Escape metal casing measures 6.5" in diameter, the rope is 40ft long and has a harness connected at each end. The whole unit weights 7kg and is in an excellent condition, there is some rubbing to the original paintwork. The Fire Escape appears to work fine, I've been very tempted to jump out a window and test it, but to date I have not! It would be a great decorative piece for any home, or mid 20th century commercial property / restaurant.
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