Firefighters Ask Residents To Adopt a Hydrant - KMOT.COM - Minot, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Firefighters Ask Residents To Adopt a Hydrant

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We salute adoptive parents. They can be real life savers. What a difference they can make by taking in children, pets, or fire hydrants.

Well actually, they leave the hydrants at the curb but they make sure that if a fire truck arrives, there's nothing in the way.

The odds are this fire hydrant will never be used in an emergency. It's there just in case. But if it's covered with snow and ice on a cold night when a house is burning, firefighters waste valuable time digging their way to a water source. That's why the Bismarck Fire Department is asking people to adopt a hydrant.

"The neighborhood kind of takes turns, everybody kind of comes out, whoever's out there first and takes a minute to two and shovels it. Doesn't take long to do it right away, cause when it piles up, it can take a little longer. We try to take turns to get it done right away," says Bismarck resident Robb Eckert.

Ideally, there should be three or four feet clearance around the hydrant, and the caps should have several inches of free space to allow firefighters to quickly hook up a hose. You know how fast a fire can spread.

"There's been guys who have had to shovel as a fire's going on. Or there's times where we have to bypass a hydrant because we just can't find it, can't see it, or it's iced up so much that we just can't use it," says Capt. Luke Teagle, Bismarck Fire Department.

He says firefighters will shovel around some hydrants when they can. But with nearly 6,000 of them across the city, they can't take care of all of them.

There's no paperwork to sign or ceremony to go through to adopt a hydrant. You just agree to take personal responsibility to clear a path around the one closest to you.

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