9/3/1991 the Imperial Foods Chicken processing plant fire killed twenty-five in Hamlet, NC. Twenty-five people were killed and fifty-four injured in a fire that trapped the occupants behind locked fire doors after a hydraulic line failure caused a fire. “The intense fire quickly spread products of combustion throughout the plant causing employees to search for available exits. Although many of the estimated 90 occupants escaped without incident, others found exterior doors unavailable and sought alternative means of escape. Not all of those who remained were able to be rescued, and many perished.” The plant never received a safety inspection. The owner was sentence to 20-year prison, and the company received the highest fines in the history of North Carolina.
9/3/1884 a Detroit, MI firefighter “died of injuries he sustained on February 26, 1874, while operating at a fire.”
9/3/1894 a Chicago, IL firefighter died “while fighting a fire at a lumber yard on Throop Street. He drowned when he fell into Samson’s Slip. Firefighters on the fireboat Geyser heard him fall and immediately began search and rescue operations, but he drowned before he could be pulled from the water.”
9/3/1938 a Manhattan, New York (FDNY) firefighter “died as a result of injuries he sustained on August 31, 1938, when he fell down an elevator shaft while operating at a single-alarm fire at 20 East 50th Street.”
9/3/1951 a Binghamton, NY firefighter “died while fighting a huge fire at the old State Armory Building on Washington Street, across from the Forum Theater. This was a million-dollar fire; units from the City of Binghamton as well as Johnson City and Endicott helped fight this large fire.”
9/3/1963 two Bossier City, LA firefighters died “while trying to rescue two city water department workers who were overcome by hydrogen sulphide gas inside an underground sewer lift station in the city’s Shady Grove subdivision. The first firefighter lost his life on September 3, 1963, the day of the incident, and second died two days later after both were exposed to lethal gasses inside the lift station. A third firefighter was also injured in the incident. Despite the heroic efforts of the three firefighters, the two water department workers who they were attempting to rescue lost their lives.”
9/3/1965 a Chicago, IL firefighter died “while battling an extra alarm fire at the Herman Hettler Lumber Company 2601 Elston Avenue. The fire started when gasoline being pumped into an underground 1,000-gallon storage tank caught fire, spreading flames to a three-story lumber storage building and several smaller lumber sheds. Because of the large amount of combustible materials on site, more than forty fire apparatus responded to the blaze, and the firefighters successfully contained the fire.”
9/3/1967 Union Township, New Jersey firefighter “died while operating at a fire in a welding shop.”
9/3/1975 a Jacksonville, FL firefighter died “at the scene of a kitchen fire on Lotus Road. After the fire had been knocked down, he took off his mask and went back inside to help with overhaul work. He then walked back outside and collapsed.”
9/3/2004 a New Brunswick, NJ firefighter died at a multiple-family residential fire. “He arrived first, reported a working fire, and took command. Not seeing any occupants outside or leaving the structure, he entered the structure to alert residents to the fire. He was not wearing any personal protective clothing or equipment. He was banging on doors to alert residents of the fire when an explosion occurred. Thirteen adults and two children all escaped because of his actions. He was mortally burned in the explosion and ensuing fire. Arriving firefighters found him on the second-floor landing and removed him from the structure. He was pronounced dead at the scene. A homeless man who slept in the hallway of the building caused the fire. The man discarded a cigarette near some plastic shower curtains and a plastic container of gasoline. The curtains and the gasoline ignited, producing sufficient heat to cause 3 nearby propane cylinders to vent their contents. The accumulated propane gas is thought to be the source of the explosion that killed the firefighter.”
9/3/2017 around 6:30 p.m. 200 firefighters fought a five-alarm fire that started inside a restaurant on the ground floor of a Tribeca building, 24 Murray Street, near Church Street, that quickly shot up through the roof, leaving eleven firefighters injured. Flames could be seen shooting out the roof and windows and huge plumes of black smoke billowed into the sky, and the acrid smell of smoke carried as far as Brooklyn, NY.
9/3/2014 thirteen people were hurt, including several children, in a chemical explosion at a museum in Reno, Nevada, where presenters demonstrating a so-called smoke tornado caused the blast with a faulty mixture.
9/3/1925 Caldwell, OH the Airship Shenandoah crashed after it was caught in a violent updraft that exceeded the pressure limits of its helium gas bags killing the crew of fourteen.
9/3/1891 Attalla, AL conflagration: several buildings were destroyed by the fire that started around 2:00 a.m.
9/3/1876 St Hyacinthe, QB 600 buildings were destroyed by fire that started in the western end of the city around 1:30 p.m.
9/3/1870 Calais, ME conflagration: a fire started near the livery stable and damaged several buildings.
9/3/1897 twelve miners died in a coal mine explosion near Glenwood Springs, CO at the Sunshine Coal Company.
9/3/1891 F.A. Reynolds & Company dynamite factory near White Pigeon, MI exploded killing sixteen. It was estimated that there were 20 tons of dynamite in the three-story brick building.
9/3/1935 Southern, FL the “Labor Day Hurricane”, passed through the Florida Keys swept northwestward along the west coast to St. Petersburg and Tampa, more than 100 died in during the storm; the President ordered Navy, Army and Red Cross to assist.
9/3/1777 the American flag was flown in battle for the first time, during a Revolutionary War skirmish at Cooch’s Bridge, MD.