State Rep. Randy Frye (R-Greensburg) has authored a piece of legislation that will help firefighters by being knowledgeable of whether or not private fire hydrants have their water access turned on. Today, House Bill (HB) 1334 passed out of the House unanimously on third reading.
HB1334 requires the local water company to notify the fire department of jurisdiction and the local board of health prior to turning off water service to a multifamily residential complex for nonpayment of fees. Private fire protection systems including sprinkler systems, standpipe systems and private fire hydrants are also disconnected from service at this time.
This notice must be hand delivered or sent by verified mail at least seven days before the date of the proposed termination.
“This aims to ensure that during an emergency, firefighters do not waste time hooking up to a private hydrant that has no water,” said Rep. Frye. “Last summer, the Indianapolis Fire Department (IFD) encountered this very problem. I was pleased to have IFD Chief Ken Bacon at our committee hearing to testify that this bill makes sure that firefighters would be better prepared to properly battle a fire even if a private fire hydrant is turned off.”
If the bill is passed by the Senate and signed by the governor, it will be effective upon passage.
“Having worked in public safety as a firefighter for 26 years, I have a somewhat unique perspective on these matters,” said Rep. Frye. “I feel honored that I am able to use my past experiences to influence good public safety policy in my current role.”