MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Opinion

June 11, 2014

County firefighters need water

This is true for all businesses — workers need the tools to complete the task.

It’s difficult to hear that local volunteer firefighters do not have enough water to complete the task.

That’s because there are way too few fire hydrants in the county.

The city of Muskogee has fire hydrants no more than 500 feet from each other.

That allows firetrucks to pull up to a hydrant, drop a hose and drive up to 500 feet to the fire.

There are no regulations addressing frequency of fire hydrants in the county.

County volunteer firefighters must go to the fire with full tanks. If the water supply is insufficient to douse the fire, then firefighters must drive the truck to the nearest hydrant, fill up, and return.

“There’s nothing worse than running out of water,” Mountain View Volunteer Fire Department Chief Don Dailey said recently.

The Mountain View department was fighting a fire in May and had to leave to get more water before the fire was extinguished.

“We had the fire about out, and then we ran out of water,” Dailey said.

Area firefighters are working to solve the problem. They are seeking grants to pay for the hydrants.

County commissioners must look at this issue and make a tough decision on what’s most important right now.

If the commissioners feel county firefighters do not have enough water to do their jobs, then commissioners must try to find funding for the project, too.

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