Fire Hydrants

Fire Hydrants Are Important – JFB

People don’t often think about fire hydrants and their significance, and so the Jamaica Fire Brigade (JFB) is reminding the public that hydrants are just as important to the public as they are to the Brigade.

“We implore members of the public to be understanding of the fact that fire hydrants are one way in which the fire brigade gets water – the main item for putting out a fire. The network of fire hydrants is extremely important to us and it is extremely important to you as citizens as well, which is why you will see hydrants placed in strategic areas at strategic points,” Public Relations Officer, JFB, Emeleo Ebanks, told JIS News.

The island’s extensive network of fire hydrants is continuously growing, in light of the boom in the local construction industry. New developments like plazas, subdivisions and multi-dwelling units must include in their development plans the strategic placement of safety devices, such as fire hydrants, within the geographical area.

Mr. Ebanks shared that fire hydrants exist for the Brigade’s use during an emergency and are maintained periodically by the respective fire stations.

“Every three months we try to go in and do basic checks. Each fire station has what we call a ‘fire ground’, so they are responsible for a geographical space. They will make sure that all the hydrants, as much as possible, are in working condition in their working space,” the Public Relations Officer said.

During a routine maintenance, firefighters first ensure accessibility to the hydrant by clearing debris from around the structure. The valve box and barrel of the hydrant are then cleared. The barrel, the upright column of the hydrant, is flushed to remove impediments and confirm that water can be accessed from the hydrant. Once complete, the hydrant is given a fresh coat of paint to signify that it has been recently serviced.

The signs of a hydrant in need of servicing that the general public can look for include a leaking hydrant, the settling of water around a hydrant or one that has water coming up from underground.

Persons are being encouraged to help in the care of fire hydrants by not blocking access to them or inserting stones or other debris into the hydrant barrel, and to be on the lookout for misuse.

“If you see a fire hydrant in need of repair, call the Jamaica Fire Brigade immediately. Do not mess around with the hydrants. If you see persons tampering with the fire hydrant, we ask that you call the police or call the Fire Brigade, so we can come in and remedy the situation.

Hydrants are important to us and they are also important to you,” added Mr. Ebanks.

WRITTEN BY: CHARNELE HENRY
SOURCE: JIS news

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