View Poll Results: How do you catch a hydrant?

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  • Loop the supply line around the hydrant.

    69 83.13%
  • Stand on the line.

    1 1.20%
  • Loop something else (other than the supply line) around the hydrant.

    9 10.84%
  • Other (please specify)

    4 4.82%
  1. #1
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    Question Catching a Hydrant?

    I was wondering what your department's policies/procedures were for catching (connecting to) a hydrant.

    I've heard every single one of these methods (and others) be advocated by different firefighters. Personally, our department tell us to either loop the supply line once around the hydrant, or throw the rope we have around the hydrant and fold the hose behind the hydrant (sort of wedging it). I can see the pluses and minuses for each method... what's your method of choice?

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    We currently loop the hose around the hydrant, from the street side to the sidewalk side, so that if it snags it is pulled into traffic, not any crowds who may be watching.

    There has been talk of using a rope (which I believe is the industry/NFPA recommendation now), but we try to adhere to the KISS theory. Due to manpower restrictions, Rookies are usually tasked with hydrant duty, and they don't need anything else confusing them.
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    When I was in TN and actually had a distrit with hydrants we looped the supply line around the hydrant. Can you give me more info on using the rope method. I am unfamiliar with it?
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    WE carry a rope looped through the last fold. The lay out person graps the road and the coupling and this gives them about 35-40' of hose. That is more than enough to make the connect should the hydrants be off the road a bit. However the loop is designed so that it comes off easy and would not work wrapped aroudn the hydrant.

    I have seen it done in other places though.
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    We use 5" LDH. We pull off about 50', fold it back on to itself with the coupling towards the rig, then kneel on it. That way, if it gets hung up, the coupling wont hit the FF kneeling on it.
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  6. #6
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    Loop once around the hydrant, then stand on the end coupling.



    (still waiting for someone to come up with a joke about running after loose hydrants and "catching" them. )
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Originally posted by Bones42
    (still waiting for someone to come up with a joke about running after loose hydrants and "catching" them. )
    Yea.. I'm glad people actually answered seriously! That's exactly why I included "(connecting to)"

    SmokeEater... basically the rope is attached to supply line for two reason. 1.) To make it easy to get the end of the supply line.. assuming that it ends up futher in the bed than you could reach. and 2.) (though I've never used this method) You can also throw the loop over the hydrant and fold the hose over itself and basically wedge it (almost) where the hydrant meets the ground. If that is not possible, than you could also attempt to wedge it and simply put one foot on it. That way if a coupling snags in the bed, hopefully you'll be paying attention (and assuming you can still see the truck) and can take your foot off of the hose, but also if you don't get your foot off, atleast you didn't have all your weight on it and (supposedly) your less likely to get injured. As far as the rope concept goes.. the idea with that is that it'll hold up to a point, but would break away before breaking things!
    Personally, I've always just looped the line aroung the hydrant.. I go with the easiest method. And hey.. if the hydrant breaks.. well better it than my leg!

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    We have a rope tied to the hose that also has a bag of hydrant tools tied to it, and while the engine is driving off the hydrant person is getting the tools out of the bag and getting the hydrant ready.

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    We loop the hose so that the coupling end is on the top of the loop. Some members had advocated looping it with the coupling end on the bottom to minimze the chance of the hose unwrapping, but we've found that also sometimes makes it TOO tight and difficult to unloop.

    Our standard practice is to pull the hose at least 6 feet past the hydrant before looping. This gives us plenty of hose to work with and minimizes unwrapping. We also wait until the next coupling comes off the engine (or the engine is in position, whichever comes first) before unwrapping the hydrant and connecting.
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  10. #10
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    We pull the hose about 6-10 feet past the hydrant, loop once, set the coupling down and put the humat valve on top of the cross in the hose. Holds it down pretty well.
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  11. #11
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    we just wrap the plug and go ...........I do like the which way to wrap it incase it comes loose though.
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    We use old seatbelts that we rip out of vehicles after extrication drills. They are sewn so that there is a loop at one end to throw around the hydrant and the other end has a "T" piece that has bucles at each end that wrap around the rolled coupling end. works very well. I'll have to try to get a pic of it.......
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    We have the last three folds of the lay strapped together with nylon webbing the coupling is folded back for safety and the weight of the hose is enough to keep the engine from dragging it.... If for some reason it gets hung up and drug a little when we take the webbing off we have plenty of hose to reach the hydrant..we also have the hydrant tools strapped to the line so that the engine doesn't drive off with them..

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    We are definently in the "other" category - driver of second due pumper pulls hose from bed of first-due and stretches it to hydrant and hooks up.
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    Originally posted by stillPSFB
    We are definently in the "other" category - driver of second due pumper pulls hose from bed of first-due and stretches it to hydrant and hooks up.
    SHEESH! Would that be considered a manual reverse lay?!?!

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    in my vol. dept we use a rope also. one endd of the rope has a small loop braided in and the other end has a large loop. the small end is for forming a slip-loop over ldh folded over itself twice with the coupling inside. the rope hangs off the rear of the hosebed. when the engine stops at the hydrant a passenger, if we have one, pulls the rope. this brings down the bundle of approx. 15-18' of ldh. he grabs a canvas bag from the tailboard and throws it off. puts that large loop over the hydrant and gives the driver the signal to go. as the truck proceeds the hydrant man does his thing. we have a paid duty driver at all times so the rope thing works well if he is alone. the first one that comes along connects. now a question for u all. does anybody have an air horn signal for "charge the line"? we do not all have radios so u can imagine tryin to yell or wave in the dark. let me know.

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    Hydrant bag with tools is tied to the end of the hose so it is not forgotten...wrap the hydrant once and stand on the end behind the coupling with ONE foot, never both, for obvious reasons.

    Originally posted by Bones42
    (still waiting for someone to come up with a joke about running after loose hydrants and "catching" them. )
    We "dress" our hydrants...I have a pic from my FF1 class of the instructor "dressing" the hydrant with his turnout coat and helmet... Haha, call your buddies over at another station or dept. and ask them if they know the proper way to "catch" a hydrant, then tell them "Good, ya gat one runnin' down main street...better go git it!"
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  18. #18
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    Originally posted by FTMPTB15
    SHEESH! Would that be considered a manual reverse lay?!?!
    No, that would be considered working harder, not smarter.

    We have no official policy on how to catch the plug. It depends on the situation and personal preference. If we know the second-due is close, we'll wrap the hose (5") and let the other rig make the connection. If we'll be flying solo for a while (we're a combo department with one career engine company), it's up to the hydrant man how he wants to do it -- as long as it's safe and it gets us water.

  19. #19
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    Talking Hydrants

    We wither have the first engine wrap the plug and lay in or our 2nd engine does a reverse lay from the scene to the closest plug.

    Either way we are getting water from a plug.

    Be sdafe out there.

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    Just drop it in the street near the hydrant. Last 30 feet or so are bundled together, drop off the hydrant bag with it. Weight of hose keeps it from moving.

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    Originally posted by FTMPTB15


    SHEESH! Would that be considered a manual reverse lay?!?!
    No, down here that would be considered normal SOP We only use 2.5" for supply line normally, I wouldn't want to try it with 5"!

    I've only ever seen it happen once down here where someone gets out and grabs the line while the pumper keeps going, and that's when the **** suddenly hit the fan at a factory fire and we had to switch from offensive interior attack to aerial master stream protection of exposures - the pumper had to lay a line from a hydrant to a quint and relay pump somewhere in the middle.
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    Originally posted by stillPSFB
    We only use 2.5" for supply line normally, I wouldn't want to try it with 5"!
    HA, a number of months ago we had a structure fire. Our first due laid in, but the hose came loose from around the hydrant and ended up about 100ft.+/- from the hydrant. When we arrived (second due) our Chief was pulling the 5"!! <- I think that's the exact face that I made! Needless to say, we took over from there and he was just a wee bit ****ed about the whole incident. It's all good though.. everyone (including the chief) eventually got a laugh outa that!

  23. #23
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    Thumbs up Well................

    We use 3" for supply line, (Handlines too, if we want to) and Drop one or two lines at the Hydrant, wrapping a turn around it. Next Engine hooks up to the hydrant and supplies water to the first one. Third engine lays in from a different Hydrant, Fourth Engine picks up Third Engine's hydrant and pumps line(s). System works well for us. We will use a reverse lay when needed, but that's not often. In that scenario, First Engine takes a position on side A of the Fire Building, Second Engine lays from First to the Hydrant.
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  24. #24
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    My department uses the hydrant wrap as the norm. I have seen it done other ways. Not always the best way. Our second due engine usually ties the hydrant and lays into the first due engine.

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    I probably should mention that wrapping a hydrant isn't really possible here - our hydrant system usually consists of a ground ball which is located below ground level under a cover, to which we attach one of the portable hydrants that we carry on the rigs - if we wrapped a hose around it, it would probably rip the whole thing out of the ground.

    The other reason for the second-due hand-stretching supply line back from the first due to the hydrant is that there is great emphasis on using as little as possible off the second-due, so as it can return to service as quickly as possible (nearly all of our hoses are cotton jacket which require washing and drying - we can't just repack them onto the rigs when the job is over).
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