Section III-5

Hydrant & Drafting Guidelines

Purpose:  To establish minimum guidelines for fire hydrant and apparatus drafting operations.

Scope:   This policy applies to all Three Star Fire Department personnel when operating with hydrants and operations requiring drafting.  These guidelines are to be used when using responding Three Star Fire Department personnel.  The Incident Commander is encouraged to utilize mutual aid personnel as deemed necessary.


Hydrant Guidelines

The standard procedure to be used for hydrant hook-ups will be the following:

Drafting and Suction Guidelines

If a hydrant is not readily available or nearby for pumper to connect to, Three Star Fire Department will rely on drafting operations either from a dump tank or nearby water supply (pool or pond).

Prior to drafting, the driver/operator will park the apparatus as close as possible to the water source.  If dump tank operations is to be utilized, the pumper shall be positioned to allow Tanker 31 accessibility to dump its water supply and exit.  

Tanker 31 dump tank shall be carefully removed, with not less than three personnel, and placed on flat surface, free of any debris that may cut or puncture a whole in the dump tank liner.  Position tank in such a position that when operation is completed, the water can be emptied away from the pumper and downhill.  Water from Tanker 31 shall be emptied into the tank.

Assisted by the firefighter, remove the hard suction hose from the side of the apparatus and connect the number of lengths needed to reach the water source.  In the majority of operations Three Star will be involved in, the hard suction will be placed directly into the nearby dump tank.  The strainer will be placed on the end of the hard suction length that will be placed into the water.  Once the strainer is in place with a tight seal, the hard suction lengths will be placed into the water source.  The strainer must be kept from hitting the bottom of the water, using a rope if necessary.

Once the hard suction hose is in a desirable location then the rope must be tied-off, as to avoid any dislocation of the strainer.  The female end of the hard suction hose will be attached to the steamer connection on the pump panel.  Once the suction hose is connected to the apparatus, then the pump operator will draw a vacuum and get water from the water source.  Disconnection of the hard suction from the apparatus will be as stated above, but done in reverse order.

Hydrant Color Scheme

All personnel, including Officers, must be familiar with the color scheme assigned to the hydrants within Three Star Fire Department Fire Management Zone.  The colors are:

·       Red - flow rate less than 499 gallons per minute

·        Orange - flow rate between 500 and 999 gallons per minute

·        Green - flow rate between 1000 and 1499 gallons per minute

·        Blue - flow rate between 1500 gallons per minute or higher

·        Black – Out of service