The City of Titusville, Florida / Water Resources / NewsHydrant Tampering
Protecting Your Drinking Water
TITUSVILLE, FL - (January 12, 2018) – Late evening on January 11, 2018, operators at the Mourning Dove Water Production Plant in Titusville were alerted to an increase in the water demand in the system. The demand grew dramatically to over five times the normal amount of water flow for that time of night. The operators immediately took steps to increase the amount of water into the plant to meet this unusual large demand for water and maintain system pressure. After ensuring inflow into the plant, the operators alerted both the Titusville Police Department and the Fire Department to determine the cause and location of this aberrant amount of water use.
Water utilities must maintain pressure within their water distribution system in order to prevent conditions which could allow contamination to enter the public water system such as backflow by back-pressure or back-siphonage. If pressure is not maintained a precautionary boil water notice would be issued requiring customers to boil their water until bacteriological analyses could be performed to determine water quality.
Due to the prompt action of its personnel during this situation, Titusville was able to activate additional resources so that the integrity of its water system was maintained and all water quality and safety standards were met.
By 2 a.m. on Friday morning Brevard County Sheriff’s Office had apprehended two individuals who were tampering with a hydrant in Mims. It was determined that the two had opened seventeen fire hydrants in Titusville and four fire hydrants in Mims. Titusville’s police and fire were able to locate the hydrants and Water Resources emergency field personnel were able to secure the hydrants.
Tampering with fire hydrants is a crime. It is a crime that can cause significant impact to both the safety and health to everyone on the water system. Hydrants provide water at a high pressure. If opened by unauthorized persons, the force of the flow from the hydrant can cause damage to surrounding property and cause safety hazards to roadways and motorists. Most importantly, fire hydrants affect system pressure. A drop in pressure can mean that water would not be available for fires and other emergencies; it also means water would not be available or sufficient for critical use facilities such as dialysis centers, hospitals, and other health care centers. If a water system lost system pressure, then all customers on the system would be required to boiled water prior to consumption.
The City of Titusville applauds the employees in Water Resources Water Production, Water Resources Field Operations, Titusville Police Department, Titusville Fire Department, and the Brevard County’s Sheriff Office. The quick response and pro-active efforts of these men and women prevented a situation that could have been detrimental to the health and safety of all Titusville’s water customers. Titusville water customers can be assured that Titusville’s water quality has been maintained throughout this incident.