Safety officials respond to fake hydrant 0
The Portage Fire Department will hold their Spring Fling May 11. (File photo
An issue of fire safety was called into question after a Portage resident was charged with a ticket for parking in front of a fake fire hydrant on her front lawn.
Bev Patterson was charged $25 for parking outside the hydrant and has to go to court to fight the issue sometime in December.
However, the real concern is centred on whether or not it's the wisest move to up a fake fire hydrant on the front lawn.
Insp. Jean-Marc Nadeau gave his thoughts on the incident and whether regulations should be passed to bar these kind of occurrences from happening.
"Our firefighters recognize the fire hydrants and have a good understanding of where they are. The hydrants are yellow in this city but at the same time, it's not an advisable ornament to put in the front yard and certainly not close to the street," said Nadeau.
The incident, which occurred last Saturday morning in the early hours of the morning, is one in which Nadeau said residents should understand the safety concerns involved with these kind of ornaments.
"It's one thing if it's in the backyard as part of a flower arrangement but it's one of those touchy things," he said. "I'm not a firefighter but reason would lend me to believe that you wouldn't want to have that on the front lawn for safety reasons. It also shows people they shouldn't park on the street."
Brian Taylor, manager of public works, said that it is a safety concern and recalled an incident in which a house was lost on Old Bridge Road because of the confusion.
Phil Carpenter, fire chief at the Portage Fire Department, said that departments would prefer to see the ornaments in the backyard.
"There's a possibility that people have hydrants for ornaments and preferably we'd like to see those in a backyard or away from the streets so it doesn't confuse us," said Carpenter.
"In case of emergencies, we do have a map that indicates where the hydrants are located on streets and usually we get check the map prior to responding. That way we know where they are before we get to the scene."
He also said that when you factor in the time of day, it could be even more of a concern for the safety officials.
"If there is a hydrant there and it's nighttime, sometimes it's a heat of the moment thing. We're going to grab it and find out pretty quick if it's fake or not because we usually flush a hydrant before connecting to it.
"It would be some time that would be wasted in this process. A common sense approach would be good and the police officer was probably doing is job in seeing the hydrant was blocked so we appreciate his efforts. He's not going to see if it's a real one and I can't speak for him but I think he's just doing his job," said Carpenter.
Do you think it should be illegal to have fake safety equipment on one's front lawn?