Pittsburg — Starting Wednesday, the City of Pittsburg Fire Department will begin flushing and testing fire hydrants in neighborhoods across Pittsburg. The fire department estimates that it will take four to six weeks to test the nearly 1,300 fire hydrants inside the city limits.
According to a release from the Pittsburg Fire Department, flushing removes harmless minerals and sediment that collect in the water mains and ensures water quality for Pittsburg residents. The fire department also gathers flow data on the hydrants, which helps determine which hydrants are the best to access when responding to fire-related emergencies.
Fire hydrant testing is also a requirement for the City’s ISO (Insurance Service Office) score, which measures the fire prevention and fire suppression capabilities of cities. The City of Pittsburg currently has an ISO rating of 2 on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the best. The ISO provides the score to insurance companies, which then use it to help set insurance rates for residential and commercial properties.
According to the release, Pittsburg citizens should be advised that the testing and flushing of hydrants can cause water to appear discolored for a short amount of time. While there are no health hazards associated with this, it is best to avoid washing white clothing while the flushing occurs, to avoid the possibility of stains.
If residents encounter discolored water following hydrant flushing, it is recommended that they run the cold-water taps throughout their home (bathroom sinks and tubs, kitchen faucets, etc.) for five to 10 minutes until the water runs clear, the release said.This allows discolored water to work its way out of household plumbing.
To help inform citizens on their progress, the fire department will publish daily updates with specific times and locations on city communications channels, including Facebook, Twitter, and local TV cable channel 6. A resource page on the city’s website is also available for residents to find additional information: www.pittks.org/fire-hydrant-flushing.
For more information, residents can contact the Pittsburg Fire Department at 620-231-1870.