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Town replaces older hydrants
Written by {ga=staff-reporter}   
Tuesday, 19 January 2010 17:00

A report that showed scores of fire hydrants around Clarkdale don’t work exaggerates the true number of hydrants that need to be replaced.

It does not suggest some areas of town are less safe from house fires than others, Clarkdale Utilities Director Wayne Debroskey said.

Many hydrants listed in a Jan. 5 report to Clarkdale Town Council are inside subdivisions where improvements have not been officially adopted by the town, Debroskey said.

The town never adopted the 34 hydrants listed as inoperable at the Highlands subdivision and is not currently responsible to connect them. Water can be trucked there to fight fires if needed, Debroskey said.

Another 36 units will come off the list of out-of-commission hydrants when the town adopts infrastructure and improvements for an extension to Verde Valley Christian Church near Centerville Road and South Broadway.

Defective hydrants within the town’s jurisdiction are being replaced at a cost of $2,500 per unit, he said.

The town is working with Clarkdale Fire District to target priority hydrants, many of which are approaching 100 years in age, Debroskey said.

To replace the antiques from Clarkdale’s mining days, town crews must shut off water to the hydrant by uprooting and capping ancient pipes where valves should have been installed in the first place.

This sometimes means neighborhoods go without drinking water for short periods of time. The disruptions cannot be helped, Debroskey said.

“We’re working closely with the fire district to make sure everybody has fire protection,” Debroskey said.

Hydrants near Yavapai College and on Hollow Reed Road are already serviced and repaired, he said.

“That actually leaves us with four hydrants still out of service,” he said. “All these areas have hydrants very close by or other ways to get water to the scene.”


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