Fire Departments Remind Residents to Shovel Out Fire Hydrants
The fire department says you should shovel out a 3–foot perimeter around your hydrant
FARGO, N.D. — Fire departments want to remind you to shovel out the snow around your nearest fire hydrant.
If your fire hydrants are buried under snow, firefighters say there could be a serious delay in getting a fire put out.
The Fargo Fire Department shared a video from Oshkosh, Wisconsin that shows how much time and effort it takes to clear a hydrant from snow and hook it up to the hose.
“Anytime we get called out for a working fire that’s actively burning we need to prepare to hook into the hydrant. We might not always use that hydrant, but we’re planning ahead just in case we need to,” Battalion Chief Jason Ness said.
The fire department says you should shovel out a 3–foot perimeter around your hydrant so firefighters can have access.
West Fargo Fire Department says their fire trucks carry about 750 gallons of water, but it doesn’t take long for that to run out.
“If we pull up to a fully involved fire at a house, we’re going to need all the water possible. That five minutes it takes for us to shovel out a fire hydrant could mean life and death,” Fire Marshal Dell Sprecher said.
He says street crews are so busy plowing roads that hydrants often get covered up.
“If we can call on residents in the F–M area, not just West Fargo, but the whole metro area to clear fire hydrants, that’d be wonderful,” he said.
The department even has a contest where you can send in before and after pictures of your snow-cleared fire hydrants. They will be drawing winners weekly to win tumblers.
“Hopefully it works because we need all the help we can get right now,” Sprecher said.
Fargo Fire says it’s also a good idea to keep any alternative exits like windows or patio doors clear of snow in the event of a fire in your building. They also want to remind you to keep your gas meters clear of snow.