Your friendly neighborhood pool service Mesa professionals sympathize that water can especially be a precious, expensive utility in the desert. It’s never more refreshing or appreciated than amid the heart of summer’s most intense heat. Nevertheless, your pool repair Mesa pals remind you that the City of Mesa didn’t have refilling residential pools in mind when installing the city’s fire hydrants.
Sure, you laugh. Alas, Mesa’s trusted pool service wouldn’t issue such a warning without cautionary-tale inspiration from the files of “You Should Really Know Better.”
Soddy-Daisy, TN, residents who indeed not only know better but have a certain distaste for wasting emergency safety resources before they’re needed called just such a foul on one of their neighbors. Police charged a Hamilton County man with Theft of Services when his neighbors ratted him out for stealing hydrant flow to fill up his pool.
As experienced pool service Mesa professionals, we realize this actually happens more often than most would probably think. Finding the uniquely designed hose adapter and wrench to tap into hydrants doesn’t take great effort, confirmed Soddy-Diasy Fire Chief Mike Guffey, but he adds that authorities end up citing only a few culprits annually out of many more who actually attempt it.
The WRCB report of the incident notes that another man who’d recently been caught topping off his pool from the city supply faces over $600 in court-ordered restitution to the North West Utility District. The Hamilton County man busted most recently copped to the theft and now owes a substantial fine of several hundred dollars as well.
“I think people think that if it’s not coming from through their water meter that it’s free water and it’s not,” Chief Guffey said, “stealing water is just like stealing a car from somebody. It’s theft.”
We hope to never arrive at a pool service Mesa call and come across one of our East Valley neighbors imitating a stunt like this. As Guffey points out, those secured hydrant caps hold back massive pressure that could tear a poorly secured cap clear off. Should one go flying errantly while trying to open a hydrant up, it could ruin the day for any person, car or other object that it happens to hit.
Just as dangerously, firefighters undergo training to open and close a fire hydrant in such a way that water won’t backfire through the system to cause damage and leaks on impact elsewhere in the city’s mains.
Oh, by the way: please, don’t bother requesting that Mesa firefighters open up a hydrant to fill a pool. Water usage from hydrants comes out of the department’s annual budget. Also, the department ends up on the hook for annual repairs to hydrants throughout the city.