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Monday, April 09, 2012

Streetcars? Kansas City MO Needs Fire Hydrants Too

Fire broke out in Josh Priest's house at 26th Street and Stark Avenue in East Kansas City MO sometime before the fire department dispatched the alarm at 1:58 a.m. on Saturday morning April 7.

According to the story written by Amy Hawley of KSHB-41 Action News- Mr. Priest's son "saved" the family by crying all night- but that wasn't the headline.

The story was that the Priest family's home suffered more fire damage than it should have was because the fire department- even with their three pumpers called to the scene initially- ran out of water.

CSW checked recordings of fire department radio communications that morning- and the following was clear:

First-arriving- let's call them Pumper (engine) A- sees smoke and/or fire but no hydrant immediately nearby and used the water in the truck's tank- anywhere from 500 to 1000 gallons- to take a hoseline into the 1-story house to get the first attack the flames.

Standard procedure ...  this leaves the second arriving Pumper B to find a water source i.e. a fire hydrant- which was done that morning- BUT...

That hydrant is dead- and- having lived in that general area once- hydrants are far-between (as are curbs- storm sewers or sidewalks)

This leaves either Pumper B or just arriving Pumper C to supply Pumper A with their tank's water with the other patrolling for a hydrant in the area- or both just get in close using their own lines and water.

By 2:14 a.m.- the water supply was so untennable and the fire had become intense enough that the battalion chief ordered the interior firefighting crews outside the house.

Shortly- a fourth pumper that had been dispatched arrived with a water supply- and the fire in the Priest family home was declared under control at 2:25 a.m..

The KSHB story notes that not only was one of the relatively-few fire hydrants in that area dead- but that there are more than 800 defective hydrants throughout KC-MO..

That's when the daily leaking/breaking water mains aren't making other hydrants useless.

Reporter Hawley's story states that city water rates will go up $9 per month to help alleviate those issues.

Still- one wonders how many new hydrants- streets with curbs and stormwater drainage and sidewalks a proposed $100-million or so the City of KC-MO wants to spend on a streetcar system downtown could buy.


sell my house said...

I have read Amy Hawley's KSHB-41 Action news.But stories are stories.Yes,Reality is not just like them.I like the way of your thinking.sell my house

Super Dave said...

Sly says to hell with hydrants we need a train instead.

And the sheeple stood by and let it happen.

Michael said...

I think that you need to understand that the idea behind public transit development is to increase city revenues for just such matters and to help with Kansas City's image on a national stage, the sort of image upon which convention and investment dollars rely. Our current public transportation picture is a travesty and a joke. Being so bound to automobile-only transit in this day and age is an albatross around the city's neck. Its time to move forward or be left behind. I encourage any of you to visit a city where public transit is far-reaching, well-implemented, and as a result, is widely used, and see if your tune is the same.

The Observer said...

Do not get me started on the useless Water Department!

To the people discussing mass transit as a way to increase city revenue: I would remind you that even in a city as friendly to mass transit as NYC still makes no money with their transit authority.

Groucho K. Marx said...


I have been to a number of cities with ACTUAL mass transit (not just a streetcar line downtown) and yes- they are used- but as The Observer points out- much if not all systems require taxpayer subsidies to keep running.

I feel as though a streetcar line downtown isn't really "mass transit" because except for the apartment and condo dwellers down there- there isn't really any "mass" to transport.

Thanks for playing BTW...

T.O.- notice how the city's pollys shot down the citizens' wishes- now the clowns want a street car to nowhere (where people actually commute from and to anyway).