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    Default For Explorers and Juniors only about Hydrants

    Ok 1st question, if you are assigned to hook up the supply line from a hydrant to the engine, what is the very 1st thing you do before doing anything with the hose lines?

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    ummm, take the caps off? step off the truck? make sure you have your hydrant wrench with you? make sure the hose is sufficiently wrapped before the engine goes? make sure you have a radio so you can communicate with the driver so u know when to open the hydrant?

    I think I know the answer you are looking for (and I intentionally didn't mention it, but it is an important point), but the way you phrased the question, there are several correct answer.
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    Yea, but I was looking for,flush the hydrant to get all of the air,dirt or anything else that may be inside it before chagrin the line or hooking your engine up to it.

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    Question

    Originally posted by AsstEngineer292
    Yea, but I was looking for,flush the hydrant to get all of the air,dirt or anything else that may be inside it before chagrin the line or hooking your engine up to it.
    Why? Air? Dirt? What air? What dirt?


    In a large city that runs endless amounts of calls, we don't have the time to "flush an hydrant". The caps are tamper proof, are wrench tight to start with. Only in a small city or place that you aren't making the large amount of calls and making a hydrant and hooking up, you may feel that you need to flush them. We don't and the flow is as good as yours, that are flushed.

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    Originally posted by allineedisu
    Why? Air? Dirt? What air? What dirt?

    In a large city that runs endless amounts of calls, we don't have the time to "flush an hydrant". The caps are tamper proof, are wrench tight to start with. Only in a small city or place that you aren't making the large amount of calls and making a hydrant and hooking up, you may feel that you need to flush them. We don't and the flow is as good as yours, that are flushed.
    no, AsstEngineer292 is right (well, not about the air or dirt, but rather rocks or garbage).

    flushing a hydrant is an often overlooked step. i don't know about your tamper proof hydrants (we don't have them, but I've never seen anything that was totally tamperproof), but we had a call for a reported structure fire and the junior who hooked up to the hydrant didn't flush it. well, when he charged the hydrant, you heard all the rocks and sediments that had hit the screen that we have on the front suction. fortunately, the fire snuffed itself out, so we handled it with tank water, but when we disconnected the front suction, lots of small rocks fell out. had we not had the screen, the rocks would have destroyed the impellors (or so I am told).
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

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    Flushing is great when you can do it, when you have the time, like refilling the engine or you are making a back up connection. But when you roll up and have fire through the roof and you have 500 gallons and have to lay 500 + feet of hose and you will need that water fast, sometimes you can't take the time to flush it, also in the dead of winter you can ice up a hydrant real fast. It's another reason to do yearly flushing of hydrants if the water company doesn't do it you should.

    ~Jeff
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    Originally posted by FFTide
    if the water company doesn't do it you should.
    Then deal with the DPW union.

    We flush our before connecting, but our screen still gets clogged up. Usually from bits and peices of the water main and rocks that get sucked in during breaks.

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    Originally posted by FFTide
    But when you roll up and have fire through the roof and you have 500 gallons and have to lay 500 + feet of hose and you will need that water fast, sometimes you can't take the time to flush it, also in the dead of winter you can ice up a hydrant real fast.
    Jeff, how long does it take that engine to drive 500 feet? while the hydrant is wrapped, and the engine is moving, you should be taking off the caps and flushing the hydrant.

    the dead of winter is another perfect example. if you get in that situation where you have a frozen hydrant, wouldn't you want to know before you hooked everything up to it? or would you rather know immediately, so you can tell the IC that you need to find another hydrant.
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

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    what is the very 1st thing you do before doing anything with the hose lines?
    Wait for the engine to stop.
    "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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    hey i agree but some times you really don't have the time to flush. I've come up on more than one fire where you don't want to flush for fear of getting wet and freezing either to the ground or just not moving.

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    My department has an SOP that states that before you hook up to a hydrant that it will be flushed, no exceptions!

    Besides what does it take maybe 15 seconds to flush a hydrant and you can be doing that while the engine is pulling the line.

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    Just because you are in a large department with alot of runs doesn't mean that you should not flush a hydrant. If there is trash (for example a pop can) in the hydrant, you hook up, charge it and the engineer puts it in pump, the suction will take the can right through the intake screen designed to stop it. And unless you like having screwed up pumps on the scene of a fire go right ahead and kepp not flushing them. Just my point of view.
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    I'd love to see/talk with someone that actually happened to. Here's why. Pumps are not using suction to get water from a hydrant, the hydrant is pushing water into the pump via pressure from your water system. If you start to suction water from the hydrants, your soft hose will collapse and then you will have 0 water. Anyone want to guess how much pressure it would take to force aluminum to collapse small enough to get through a screen? Can it partially block the intake? Yes, but you will still get water coming in and any decent pump operator will notice the problem soon enough.

    For those that flush, how many turns do you open the hydrant? Remember, the first few just start water trickling and are still closing the drains. If you only crack it and let it run, you are risking the chance of starting to "undermine" the hydrant as you are now putting a constant water flow out the drains.

    Not saying don't do it, just make sure why you are doing it and that you are doing it right.
    "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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    In my fours years with the fire department this is the first time I have ever heard of flushing a hydrant. It seems that it is not important to flush or we would have been told to do it before. We also drill with hooking up a hydrant and charging the line to the truck never once were we told to fluch the hydrant seems like it really doesn't matter here. We don't get many calls. (Knock on wood) Nothing has happened where a pump got messed up.
    Eng # To firecom I have a 1 story wood frame structure with a man on the roof putting the fire out...

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    Exclamation

    Originally posted by Bones42
    I'd love to see/talk with someone that actually happened to. Here's why. Pumps are not using suction to get water from a hydrant, the hydrant is pushing water into the pump via pressure from your water system. If you start to suction water from the hydrants, your soft hose will collapse and then you will have 0 water. Anyone want to guess how much pressure it would take to force aluminum to collapse small enough to get through a screen? Can it partially block the intake? Yes, but you will still get water coming in and any decent pump operator will notice the problem soon enough.

    For those that flush, how many turns do you open the hydrant? Remember, the first few just start water trickling and are still closing the drains. If you only crack it and let it run, you are risking the chance of starting to "undermine" the hydrant as you are now putting a constant water flow out the drains.

    Not saying don't do it, just make sure why you are doing it and that you are doing it right.
    ************************


    Bones, I am with you on this. Maybe someone had misinformed him on the operation of a pumper connected direct to a hydrant, using a soft sleeve. The water pressure from the main pushes the water into the pump. In a normal system you will get any where from 50 to 70 PSI from a hydrant.

    As far a large department that run a lot and DOESNíT flush before connecting, this isnít a big thing. Most of the larger departments have tamper resistance hydrants with caps that can only be open and the hydrant opened as well by using a special type of wrench.

    Besides a normal twice yearly inspection of all hydrants to ascertain that they work properly, open, run and drain is done. You have to be very careful as you can stir up any sediment in the mains and that will get into Mrs. Smith or Mrs. Jones house and will mess up her laundry!!! This is very necessary in the fall so the hydrant can be repaired if necessary before the winter comes to keep the hydrant barrel from freezing.

    If you have the time to flush, do so. All I am saying is that if you keep your hydrants maintain properly, you donít need to flush them.


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    Our village employee flushes the hydrants once a month in the fall, summer and spring. Winter they dont get flushed.
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    Don't normally come over to this forum.


    But, ALWAYS FLUSH YOUR HYDRANTS! Sure, you won't suck a can through off of hydrant pressure (As any good MPO would know), but you must always still flush your hydrants.

    You can have all of the 'tamper proof' fire hydrants you want, and you can do all of the bi-yearly inspections, but it's not going to help. We have Clow Medallion and Mueller fire hydrants throughout our entire area. They're all supposed to be 'tamper proof' and openable only with hydrant wrenches. That's fine and dandy. With that bit of background, prepare for a lengthy story with a moral:

    It's a hot summer day, and there's an old family owned warehouse in a neighboring municipality. The family's had some financial problems. Around 4:30, a caller reports smoke visible from the structure. First due company responds and the engines goes straight in to the front to try to knock it with the tank water(Thought it was in the office only). We're dispatched and told to pick up their engine's line and supply em. Well, their telesqurt pulled onto the road in front of us, was told to grab the hydrant that they wanted us to hit and prepare to set up their ladder pipe. By this time, we've realized that this fire needs big water applied fast to stop it.

    We're sent to the rear to grab another hydrant and set up there. And we did. Well, I hear on the radio "Command to Engine 2, charge the hydrant!" They charge the hydrant, and I'll tell you what, I heard the rocks destroy the impellers on the other side of the building.

    The entire operation(minus ours) was totally shut down. As it came out later, the arsonist opened the 'tamper proof' hydrant before he set the fire and loaded rocks into it. When asked why, he said to slow down the fire department.

    At the end of the day, half of the building burned down(guess which half didn't, and guess who flushed their hydrant to get the rocks and rust chips out?) The department had pebbles and rocks the whole way up their pipe. The truck was out of service for 3-4 months and they had to replace the pump.

    Moral of the story:

    You can do DAILY inspections and have 'tamper proof' hydrants, but you can never be sure. It's just like fire alarms. We wear airpacks to investigate them. We don't breathe air, but we have em just in case something goes wrong.

    Flushing hydrants is the same way. Flush it, it takes 15 seconds. It protects you, and your equipment.

    What happens if you suddenly lose water because your hydrant has been tampered with/flooded with rocks and your pump susbsequently sh**s the bed? You can have a couple firefighters stranded without water in a nasty environment, that's what...
    "Captain 1 to control, retone this as a structure and notify the fire chief...."

    Safety is no accident.

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