With the recent snowfall and knowing winter weather in Wisconsin can be very unpredictable for those of us who are not on vacation somewhere warm. One of the most problematic conditions is snowfall. At times the amount of snow we receive is minimal. Other times it can be significant.
Winter can bring unpredictable emergencies that the Greenfield Fire Department must respond to. Medical calls, fire alarms and car accidents alone will keep the Greenfield Fire Department busy. However, this time of year, fire is the greatest concern. With heating, fireplaces and holiday decorations being used throughout the city, fires become more common.
In addition to being fire safe year round, an even more watchful eye is needed during the winter. A common sense approach to safety at home is imperative this time of year.
When the Greenfield Fire Department responds to a report of fire, the responding crews spot hydrants as they approach the scene. Finding the closest fire hydrant and being able to connect fire hose is critical during an actual fire. Fire hydrants supply the water necessary to extinguish fires in homes and businesses. If fire hydrants cannot be located and accessed for use, a delay in putting out the fire is possible. A fire engine carries enough water on board for approximately 3 to 3 1/2 minutes of firefighting. If a fire hydrant is buried by snow, it could take from 4 to 6 minutes to dig out the fire hydrant. A fire doubles in size every minute. This situation can have catastrophic effect on a building and its occupants.
This year the Greenfield Fire Department is asking everyone to help with the "Adopt a Hydrant" Program. There is no need to notify the city or the Fire Department about a hydrant you have adopted, as this is an informal volunteer program. This program is intended to assist the Greenfield Fire Department in locating and clearing the snow from fire hydrants before they are needed in an emergency. Please consider helping a neighbor with a medical condition or who is elderly, by shoveling out a hydrant in front of their home. This act of kindness will benenfit the entire neighborhood.
Clearing the snow from the hydrant in your yard or your neighbors' yard could be lifesaving. Snow should be removed at least three feet around each hydrant and to the street in order to make it visible and accessible for Firefighters to connect hoses. The few minutes it will take to shovel snow around a fire hydrant could truly make the difference between life and death. With approximately 2014 fire hydrants located within the City of Greenfield, everyone's help is needed.
On behalf of the Greenfield Fire Department, thank you for keeping the Greenfield community's fire hydrants clear of snow and keeping our community safe!