---Gatineau starts annual fire hydrant testing operations
The city has started its annual fire hydrant inspection operations in Aylmer, Hull and portions of northern Gatineau. Stating that the work commenced on the same date and will go on until the end of September, a press release issued on May 10 says the project is necessary for the efficiency of local fire safety operations. The work will be conducted for the city by Joliette-based water infrastructure management firm Nordikeau.
Residents are invited to stay up to date on the operations progress by consulting a daily-updated map available on the city’s website. People are also encouraged to register for important notices, alerts, and emergency notifications from the city to be informed when their residence is in a work zone. With more than 7,000 fire hydrants in the city, the work involves purging the local fire hydrant network to clean it and allow adequate water flow and circulation.
Every year, half of the city’s fire hydrants are inspected, and those in Gatineau, Buckingham, and Masson-Angers were inspected last year. The City prioritizes keeping people safe and water will still be safe to drink despite the operations, however the work may result in reductions in water pressures and water discolouration. People are encouraged to turn on the faucet and let cold water run for around 30 seconds for it to become clear. In the case of discolouration, turning on the bathtub faucet provides faster results, the city says. If discolouration persists for more than 60 minutes, people are advised to report it by calling 3-1-1.
People are encouraged to drive slowly in work zones, as some of the operations may be conducted at night. The city says it's illegal to install or maintain a decorative fire hydrant on one’s property. Residents whose property includes a fire hydrant must ensure it is accessible to the road without obstacles in at least 1.5-metre radius for fire fighters and their equipment. Water outlets must be clear for at least a 0.5-metre radius.