Help Your Fire Company, and Yourself, When Snow Hits

SANATOGA PA – A snow-buried, ice-caked, difficult-to-find fire hydrant helps no one, and may actually cost lives and property damage.

Members of the Sanatoga Fire Company on Monday (Feb. 9, 2021) re-issued a plea often heard during winter months by firefighters everywhere. If you live near a fire hydrant, dig it out by removing snow and ice, making it easier to locate and for firefighters to do their work.

The call for public assistance came as AccuWeather forecasters and others published predictions that western Montgomery County and much of southeastern Pennsylvania were due for another winter storm. It could bring an additional 6-to-12 inches of snow to some areas, atop what fell the previous weekend.

What’s the best way to ensure hydrants have best access? The U.S. Fire Administration, a division of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, recommends (at top) a “clear space around hydrants. Maintain a 5-foot space around the circumference of fire hydrants, except as otherwise required or approved.” And if, in the process, you notice “any faulty hydrants that appear to be damaged or leaking,” report them immediately to your local fire company.

The same is true, it added, for “buildings and critical fire protection features, such as fire sprinkler and standpipe connections.”

Hydrant graphic from the U.S. Fire Administration, edited by The Post