To the Editor:
It is with serious interest and concern that we are responding to an article published Feb. 11 in the Kane County Chronicle, in which the Tri-Cities fire chiefs urged residents to dig out hydrants buried in the snow.
Over 30 years ago, RoDon Corp. in St. Charles addressed this critical issue of fire hydrants being buried in snow or covered with seasonal vegetation overgrowth by designing and manufacturing a high visibility fire hydrant locator that provides fire departments with instant visual hydrant location in both day and night and all inclement weather situations. Success with this hydrant locator – Hydrafinder – has led to a worldwide marketplace.
Our concern in the fire chiefs suggesting residents assist the fire departments by manually digging out hydrants buried in snow is the potential of personal injury, resulting in possible liability. Every year, as the winter season approaches, we are warned by the media of the dangers of snow shoveling, as it can lead to heart attack in certain individuals. The winter has been brutal in its snowfall and below-zero temperatures. We have to question the urging of anyone to personally submit themselves to such dangerous conditions when there is a specific product readily available to solve this crucial problem. It is our opinion that putting even one life at possible risk and the consequences of doing so needs to be reconsidered and addressed.
Another concern is the encouraging of residents to call their fire department to request help if they are unable to handle digging out a hydrant in their proximity. This could potentially tie up vital fire department phone lines with non-life-threatening calls.
RoDon Corp. is certainly aware of the seriousness and frustration of fire departments responding to emergencies and then being delayed to offer help because they are unable to visually locate the critical fire hydrant needed. We offer a solution with Hydrafinder that directly assists the fire department, while putting no Tri-City resident at possible risk.
Our deepest and most sincere respect goes out to all emergency responders and the dangerous job they perform daily on our behalf.
President of RoDon Corp. in St. Charles