CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — The Charleston Fire Department is reminding drivers to be cautious when traveling near a fire scene and avoid driving over a fire hose.
When flames ignite, firefighters are usually the first on the scene. But in order to put out the fire, they need to block off roads with vehicles and machinery.
“Just give us our space…give us all the space you can. And don’t run over the fire hose,” said Assistant Chief Fred Dunbar with the Charleston Fire Department.
Running over a fire hose is illegal and a problem seen right here in Charleston.
“We have about 100 to 120 fires a year. And I’d say we probably have 20 people run over a hose within a year,” said Richard Symns, Fire Marshal.
That’s 20 hoses that are taken out of service and can no longer be used to potentially save a life.
A five-inch diameter hose like this one right here which is most commonly used…can cost up to 700 dollars to replace. To counter that cost a fine of up to $500 can be given out if you run over a hose.
But crews say it’s not just the hose you could be damaging.
“If the hose were to catch on the vehicle and get pulled or dragged it could pull or tug on the truck as well. Or any of the equipment we have it hooked to or any of the fittings,” said Dunbar.
Causing danger to the firefighters using the equipment and also those who may be trapped somewhere in a fire.
“If you see lines going across the road it’s an emergency. It may not be for you but it’s for somebody else and that’s what we’re there for. We’re blocking the road to save someone’s property or to it could be actually to save somebody,” said Symns.