Fire departments rely on reliable sources of water in case of emergencies. Fire hydrants provide this necessary commodity, but it is important that fire hydrants undergo regular pressure tests to ensure that they are reliable and that the flow rate is at the required level for proper spray. These tests are accomplished by measuring the static and residual pressure for each hydrant.
Importance of the Tests
As stated above, these hydrant pressure tests help ensure the safety of the community and their reliability in case of emergency. Additionally, due to the interconnection of multiple fire hydrants, by testing the reliability of one hydrant officials are also able to make sure that the network of hydrants is working properly. Hydrant pressure tests also help determine the pressure and flow of water to commercial and residential properties.
The Pitot Gauge
In regards to the hydrant flow test, the pitot gauge is critical to ensuring an accurate test. These devices measure the flow of water as well as the fluid velocity, and are used commonly when doing fire hydrant pressure tests. If you are in charge of taking care of this equipment, be sure to keep a firm grasp when executing the test.
Who and When
Hydrant pressure tests should be carried out every four to five years. These tests are often fulfilled by city officials or paid contractors. In order to ensure the proper safety nationwide, they follow strict guidelines and regulations by the NFPA, or the National Fire Protection Association.
As stated above, fire hydrants and other hydrant systems are important for the safety and wellbeing in the community. It is important to keep the hydrants up to the proper code of standards in order to continually function properly. If you have any concerns about your hydrant system, be sure to contact a city official.