Hydrant Testing Will Continue
Jul 24, 2020 | Fire
During the past few months, firefighters have been performing their annual hydrant inspection and maintenance program throughout the City of Hickory service area. There are over 2,500 hydrants located in the City, and nearly two thirds have already been inspected.
During this process, firefighters and public utilities personnel work very close to busy streets while actually flowing water from hydrants. For the safety of all, motorists are encouraged to reduce their speed and exercise extreme caution when recognizing their path of travel will pass nearby hydrants being operated. Although checking these hydrants will take place on weekdays from 8:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m., occasionally, firefighters may have to make various checks during weekends and after-hours when it is impractical or not feasible to do so during the weekday.
“Although firefighters check hydrants for various reasons, the main priority is to ensure that each hydrant is verified for usage in the event of a fire. While flowing each hydrant, firefighters also use instruments to calculate the amount of pressure and available water. This proactive approach is also important in maintaining the City’s current fire insurance rating,” stated Deputy Chief Chad Fisher.
“An added benefit of this program is that flushing hydrants helps maintain water quality. However, as a consequence of flushing, sometimes this operation causes brief discoloration. If this should occur, call the City of Hickory at (828) 323-7500 to flush the main line. After the main line is cleared of discoloration, homeowners should turn on an outside spigot to clear up the water inside the residence. Refrain from using hot water as soon as possible after experiencing discoloration to prevent the Water Heater from getting discolored,” stated Shawn Pennell, Assistant Public Services Director-Public Utilities.
A map of hydrant districts and testing status can be found on the Fire Department webpage. Residents who are registered with the Catawba County Emergency Alert System and selected to receive non-emergency notifications should receive a phone call, email, or text alert when testing is scheduled for their area.
If residents have questions or concerns, they are encouraged to call the Hickory Fire Department at (828) 323-7420 or City of Hickory Public Utilities at (828) 323-7427.
Deputy Chief Chad Fisher