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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session


Posted: February 1, 2023 03:07 PM
From: Senator Cris Dush
To: All Senate members
Subject: Installation of Dry Hydrants
                In rural and suburban areas there are often residences and businesses which have higher insurance costs because there are no fire hydrants in proximity. In many such areas local firemen, often in full gear and in inclement weather, must climb down stream banks to deploy a hose to draw water from the stream or river. This can be dangerous, especially in extreme weather conditions.

                The Commonwealth has been conducting a massive effort to replace our structurally deficient bridges which run across streams and rivers. These streams may be a ready supply of water for firemen through what is termed a “dry hydrant”. A dry hydrant is a type of fire hydrant which has one end in a body of water and has no pressure in the line. The pipe runs from a submerged position in the water to a position along the side of the road where a standard firehose fitting is mounted to pull from the natural water source. Fire companies can simply pull up next to the dry hydrant and connect to it to draw water into a tanker or run hose to a pumper truck and have water pushed to the fire fighters.

                These “dry hydrants” can reduce insurance costs to residents in the immediate area and reduce the likelihood of injuries to firefighters who would otherwise have to get hoses out in the middle of flowing water. When a structure is burning, they can also save valuable minutes by allowing shorter trips and faster fill ups of tanker trucks.

                Therefore, I will be introducing legislation that will require PennDOT to incorporate a dry hydrant into the design and construction of all new and replacement bridges and box culverts whenever that dry hydrant would enhance the safety of the local community and help lower insurance rates. My legislation will also institute language from other states to ensure that the body of water can support the proper flow.
Please join me in cosponsoring this important legislation.