If you own private property or a business with a fire hydrant on it, then it is a good idea to check with your town and state regulations for what responsibilities you may have regarding its maintenance. A properly working fire hydrant can mean the difference between life and death for you and your loved ones, so make sure to know who to contact in case of a faulty hydrant. By not only researching local laws but also knowing what correct maintenance of a fire hydrant looks like, you can work to protect your property. If you are unsure where to start, here are a few good questions to ask.
Is the Hydrant Capable of Fire-Flow?
An experienced fire hydrant maintenance worker should be able to perform and evaluate a fire hydrant flow test. This test can help to ascertain whether the hydrant would be able to withstand the pressures required during an emergency involving a fire. Adequate flow and high pressure are key parts of stopping fires, so make sure the technician performs a fire-flow test.
Is the Hydrant Correctly Located?
Fire hydrants should be placed near the street so they can be accessed by pump trucks, but also so the firefighters can easily access them in case of a fire. This means that fire hydrants should not be blocked or surrounded by any type of construction or hedge. They also need to be painted correctly according to the local regulations so the firefighters may easily spot them in an emergency situation.
Is the Hydrant Draining Properly?
Leaky fire hydrants can not only be expensive, but also hazardous. A fire hydrant that leaks can become unsupported in the ground and erode surrounding areas. Regularly check fire hydrants for standing water or muddy ground, as this can be an indicator of a hidden leak.