WASHINGTON — Local fire departments are helping cover areas of Prince George’s County where water restrictions are in place.
Water service to as many as 150,000 customers in multiple neighborhoods is impacted while the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission replaces a 54-inch main.
“When WSSC first broke the news, we developed a game plan,” says Prince George’s County’s Fire/EMS Department spokesman Mark Brady.
“We’re going to bring the water with us.”
Water tanker trucks on loan from neighboring jurisdictions will be positioned in and around the affected area.
“Combine that with the water tankers we already have in Prince George’s County and we feel very comfortable with the fact we have all this water available at a moment’s notice,” says Brady.
Fairfax County has repositioned a tanker to its Penn Daw station in Alexandria “to ensure timely mutual aid when called upon,” says fire department apokesman Dan Schmidt.
Using a reserve water tanker for use in Maryland “does not degrade our capability to respond to any all-hazards emergencies within Fairfax County,” says Schmidt.
Water tankers on loan from Charles County are positioned in Oxon Hill and Fort Washington. A tanker from Howard County is stationed in District Heights.
Five Prince George’s fire engine trucks are available and capable of carrying 500 gallons of water each. Brady says the department will respond to calls reporting fires with a fire engine and two tankers, which carry a minimum of 2,500 gallons of water each.
“So you’re looking at 7,500 gallons of water or more going the scene of any reported structure fire,” Brady says.
That amount of water “is more than ample to extinguish any fire that we deal with on a day to day basis.”
As temperatures soar and water restrictions remain in placer, the fire department is asking residents and businesses to be vigilant about fire safety.
This story has been modified to specify the number of Prince George’s trucks available and their carrying capacity.