Dry Hydrants Dramatically Improve Fire Department’s Response Time in Non-hydrant Areas

According to Ottawa Sector Chief Gerry Pingitore, “Our rural dry hydrant network has decreased our response time and allows us the ability to maintain the Fire Underwriters Superior Tanker Shuttle “Equivalent to hydrant rating classification” with the shuttling of fewer tankers. This results in a savings of fuel and wear and tear of department vehicles. We all know how critical it is to be able to access water quickly. It means we spend less time auguring ice and setting up portable pumps and more time fighting fires.”

Working in conjunction with Mainstream Dry Hydrants Inc., sites were selected to ensure year-round access to local ponds, rivers and cisterns and strategically placed in the District. To date, all of the dry hydrants have been used in real fire situations. The project began in the fall of 1999 and is ongoing.

The proprietor of Mainstream Dry Hydrants, Mike Swarbrick, a former volunteer fighter, learned that immediate access to water in rural and suburban areas was a critical concern. “I’ve experienced dragging augers, pumps and hose down onto frozen ponds and rivers in the night . I’ve seen augers that wouldn’t start right away and I’ve felt the frustration of trying to get at the water while the trucks were waiting.” He started marketing and installing quality Kochek dry hydrants in 1999, primarily through his website, Since then, he’s supplied dry hydrants to fire departments, municipalities and commercial enterprises throughout North America.

Chief Pingitore added, “Our goal initially was to install a dry hydrant anywhere there is a year round water supply. While we’re not quite there yet, throughout the entire City of Ottawa, I’m extremely satisfied with the coverage we’ve been able to achieve within my District ”

Mainstream Dry Hydrants can assist in the supply, strategic planning and installation of dry hydrants for rural and suburban communities throughout Canada and the United States.

For further information, please contact:

Mike Swarbrick, Mainstream Dry Hydrants Inc., (613) 832-0300.
Sector Chief Pingitore, Ottawa Fire Services, (613) 580-2424 ext.32245

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