Dry hydrants can help rural residents in case of a fire
In rural areas, a lack of water mains and pressurized fire hydrants can sometimes impair a fire department's ability to do its job quickly and efficiently. The success of a fire department's operation hinges on the distance a truck must travel to fill-up and return to the fire. In many cases these fill-up points are often long distances from the fire and the firefighters are unable to maintain an uninterrupted water source at the scene.
According to the Virginia Department of Forestry, a dry hydrant is a non-pressurized pipe system permanently installed in existing lakes, ponds and streams that provides a suction supply of water to a fire department tank truck.
Planning for dry hydrants involves several considerations and should involve all those affected so a coordinated effort can take place. Some factors to consider are:
-- Current and future population and building trends.
-- Property values protected.
-- Potential for loss.
-- Fire history of the area protected.
-- Current water supply systems.
-- Other potential water sources.
A dry hydrant is more than a collection of "hardware." In any area without water mains and domestic fire hydrants, the dry hydrant concept can provide a simple cost-effective solution to the need for access to water sources without delay.
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