A training night was held for members of Natchitoches Parish Fire District 4, practicing the use of a dry hydrant. A brand new unused dry hydrant was installed last month on Woodel Pond as a backup water supply for fire protection for the Village of Provencal and surrounding areas. This was a perfect test of both equipment and procedure.
In rural districts often there are no fire hydrants and water lines near an incident. Crews must locate alternative and suitable water sources to fill tankers.
Dry hydrants allow departments to access water from ponds, lakes, rivers, creeks and even swimming pools. The water must be drafted, or pumped, to the appropriate outlet, whether it is a deck gun, a feed line into a portable water tank, or filling up a tanker to send it back to a fire scene.
In this simulation, the dry hydrant was sited down a hill, and there was not room for both an engine (pumper) and the 3,000 gallon tanker to maneuver. Members had to assess entry to the property and judge placement of the pumper and tanker for max efficiency.The engine set up a forward lay of hose, while the tanker stayed on the hill above. Two hoses were connected to the tanker.
Once the engine attached to the dry hydrant, and the air was purged from the pump, water flow began. The pressure created by the engine pump was strong enough to fill the tanker at a rate of 1,000 gallons per minute.
Fire District 4 is grateful for the residents of Natchitoches Parish who allow dry hydrants to be installed at their ponds. The more access to water means faster and more efficient fire attack capabilities.