Keeping up fire hydrants in Pasco

PASCO, Wash. - Pasco is working to give firefighters the upper-hand in times of fire emergencies. They're spending over a quarter of a million dollars to get hydrants around the city up to code and even adding more.

This isn't just a safety issue, it's a savings issue for you that could happen in a matter of months.

Most of us don't think of fire hydrants until one there's a fire. Keeping those hydrants fully-functioning hasn't been easy for Pasco. Crews only give them a check up when they're not busy with emergencies.

Chief Bob Gear with Pasco Fire said, "We got to the point where we were only able to check them once every 3 years and that's just not acceptable."

Pasco's Fire Chief tells me sometimes hydrants don't work. Water can freeze, drains can clog or parts can break.

"About a month ago at a building fire when they unscrewed the cap on one of the port connections the threads came out," he said.

This delays the time to put out the fire. Which is why Pasco has a new plan: spend $300,000 to upkeep hydrants year round. Make it the duty of Public Works, add employees and add more hydrants.

The work has already started, even some new fire hydrants have gone up. The biggest challenge for the city is getting water out to the areas that don't already have it. That means digging ditches and putting in pipes.

This isn't just safer for your family, it could save you money as well.

Insurance Agent Kaleb Harvey tells me a city's safety rating on fire service is directly connected to your premiums.

Significant improvements in Pasco could mean significantly lower rates for you.

Harvey said,"You could probably see a reduction of premium up to 20-percent. So yeah, it's a big deal."

It's important to note that all existing hydrants do work, they just need some work.