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The West Fargo Fire Department has launched its annual Adopt a Hydrant program. Residents are urged to adopt a hydrant before the winter season to help save time and lives. Residents who register via the online tool will be entered into a drawing for a $20 gift card, awarded monthly. Clever, family-friendly hydrant names are encouraged.
“The Adopt a Hydrant program helps our department maintain over 2,000 fire hydrants in West Fargo,” said Dell Sprecher, Fire Marshal. “Residents who adopt a hydrant commit to shoveling out hydrants following a winter storm, allowing our crews to respond to fires more efficiently.”
To ensure accurate enrollment, the program has been reset from previous years allowing all hydrants to be adopted. Users can access the Adopt a Hydrant tool via the West Fargo Fire Department website (www.westfargofire.org) or directly at https://map.westfargond.gov/AdoptAHydrant/.
Although there is no ordinance requiring residents or commercial property owners to clear hydrants, keeping hydrants clear of snow and ice is critically important during an emergency. Flames can fully engulf a structure in less than 15 minutes, so having a clear fire hydrant assists the department’s response time significantly.
When clearing a hydrant, Sprecher asks volunteers to clear a 3-foot radius around the hydrant and ensure access is available from the road. The West Fargo Fire Department estimates it can take the average individual about 20 minutes to clear the hydrant with a shovel or brush after an average snowfall. Those who do choose to clear snow should take frequent breaks and avoid overexertion, which can lead to injuries or even heart attacks.