Fornell: Hydrant Hook-ups, Chicago Style

While looking through Chicago fire photographer Steve Redick’s collection of photos he shot a few weeks ago at 4-11 alarm fire, something caught my eye. While the rapidly spreading fire consumed the large warehouse building on Chicago’s West Side...


Another example is that Chicago specifies its 4-inch LDH supply hose to be 50-foot lengths rather than the more common 100-foot. Since hydrants are close and streets in many neighborhoods narrow, a 100’ length would be extremely difficult to work with in congested areas.

Sometimes, what appears to be a simple solution is actually the end result of years of experience and thought, designing the right equipment to fit the water system and operating environment.

Of course, you did that when you designed your new engine, or is your department the one that just bought a 2,000 gpm pumper to run in an area with a water system that is maxes out at 750 gpm?  Oh well, at least you can win the “mine is bigger than yours” argument.

Steve Redick’s photos of the fire are posted here:  http://www.firehouse.com/photostory/10848886/photo-story-flames-consume-chicago-warehouse.