You have seen these along the roadside but do you know what they are? These odd-looking pipes, called dry hydrants, are very important to the Ghent fire protection plan. These serve as our primary source of water in areas not serviced by the town (public) pressurized fire hydrants (that accounts for approx. 83% of our district). These locations, referred to as “fill sites” are voluntarily provided by land owners as a service to the community.
When a fire occurs in an outlying area, we must haul in water from fill sites to the fire scene. Large incidents demand a large amount of water, meaning multiple tanker trucks and use of two or more fill sites to quickly fill the tankers. The more fill sites that we have nearby, the less waiting time and the less distance our tankers will need to travel. The faster the tankers can deliver water, the faster and more effective we can be in fighting the fire.
How Does A Dry Hydrant Work?
(refer to the image below - click on image to enlarge)
A perforated strainer cap (A) is attached to the end of the pipe to prevent vegetation or wildlife from being drawn into the system.
An 8” diameter pipe (B) is buried underground to transfer water from the pond, lake, or steam to the fire truck parking area.
A screw connector fitting (C) is attached to the end of the pipe, above ground level.
When the fire truck arrives, the crew attaches a flexible suction hose (D) between the dry hydrant and the pump apparatus.
Once connected, the fire apparatus can transfer water to the arriving tanker truck (E) or if already close to the incident, pump water directly to the trucks and firefighters attacking the fire.
You Can Help
We are seeking to add two new dry hydrants to our network in 2019.
If you own land and have a large pond, stream or other water source and are willing to allow us access, we would like to hear from you. Click here to go to our "Contact" page.