Incline, Crystal Bay residents asked to ‘Adopt a Hydrant’

Published: Dec. 6, 2022 at 4:25 PM PST
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Up at Incline Village on a residential street just off Tahoe Boulevard there’s a fire hydrant.

Nothing spectacular about it. It’s cleared and easily identifiable. And that’s the point.

For the past ten years Pat Thorson has made sure the hydrant stays this way over the winter months and is easily accessible by firemen should they need it.

“And I’ve worked with enough fire fighters and fire marshals over the years that I knew the importance of cleaning out around or keeping access available,” says Thorson. “If it is not cleaned out and there is a fire; if that fire is at my place there is going to be a delay for firefighters getting to what they are supposed to do.”

Thorson says he uses a snow blower and a shovel to keep this hydrant open.

Because of his background no one has to ask him twice to adopt a hydrant. But for other residents in Incline Village and Crystal Bay adopting a hydrant needs to become second nature.

And this year the district has sweetened the deal

“If you clean your hydrant out three times three different storms send us your information and a couple of photos and you will be the lucky recipient of a commemorative North Lake Tahoe Fire Ornament,” says Tia Rancourt, with North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District.

Rancourt says some who have adopted a hydrant have cleared a massive area for firefighters. She says if that’s too much just the outlet needs to be clear so a responding fire crew can have immediate access to water.

She says fire crews do go out often looking for snow covered hydrants and clear the area themselves. This program frees them up for other duties, lending a helping hand to them....and perhaps one day saving your home or your neighbors’.