Parsons Sun................Apr. 21, 1997

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Bulb shines in fire station for 96 years

LIVERMORE, Calif. (AP) - How many firefighters does it take to change a light bulb.

At Livermore's Fire Sttion 1, the question is moot.

For nearly a century, firefighters there have been keepers of what is believed to be the longest-burning bulb on the planet. Donated to the department by a local businessman, it has been shining since 1901.

The naked bulb, which hangs from the ceiling, is celebrated in Ripley's Believe-It-or-Not and has attracted tourists from as far away as Japan and Australia to this city just east of Oakland.

Through earthquakes, fires and riots, the bulb has burned faintly with only short interuptions fot the occassional power outage and a 23 minute respite in 1976 when the station moved locations. The bulb was brought along to the new building.

"We gave it (an emergency) code 3," firefighter Jim McCraw remembers. "We had all the trucks out with sirens and lights flashing."

Now it has become such an institution that the firefighters worry about the day the bulb burns out.

"I'd hate to be on duty if that ever happens," McCraw said. "We'd all be brought in and interogated."



Using the newspaper story, find the vocabulary words listed below, and circle them in the article. Use the context of the story to help you figure out the meaning of each vocabulary word. Then, write the number of each word next to it's correct meaning. Use dictionary to check answers.

1) moot 2)respite 3)century 4) faintly 5) sirens 6) interrogated 7) donated 8) celebrated 9) riots 10) naked.

a) open discussion for debate b) made famous
c) pause; period of rest
d) dimly
e) violent disturbances made by large numbers of people
f) made famous
g) questioned closely
h) given as a gift
i) period of 100 years
j) devices that make loud wailing sounds

Answer key; a)1 b) 8 c)2 d)4 e) 9 f) 10 g) 6 h) 7 i) 3 j) 5

Bright Idea

How many hours is a light bulb supposed to shine? The next time you go are in a super- market, readthe information on the packagesof 60, 75, and 100 watt bulbs. How long is each type of bulb supposed to last? Do all brands of bulbs last the same amount of time? Which is the best buy?

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