Dangerous Fire Hydrants

By Aaron Gilchrist
|  Friday, Jun 25, 2010  |  Updated 10:46 AM EDT
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Dangerous Fire Hydrants

Phil Noel

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It may seem like an easy way to cool off on these scorching summer days, but D.C. officials are warning residents not to open fire hydrants during the current heat wave.

"There's a significant danger, especially to children, who can be knocked over from the force of the water," said DC Water General Manager George Hawkins.  The water is highly pressurized and the force of it coming out of the hydrant can cause injury.

Water officials also say turning on the hydrants can damage it and the underground pipes in the water distribution system.  And, tampering with a fire hydrant is a crime in the District.

The city encourages residents to seek refuge from the heat at a swimming pool, cooling center or other air-conditioned building.  You can call 311 in D.C. for more information.

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