6 years ago

Beat the Heat – Legally, Please!

The Milwaukee Police Department, Milwaukee Fire Department and city Department of Public Works have valuable information to share as the temperatures reach record levels this week.

We know people are looking for ways to keep cool, but we want them to do it legally and safely. Milwaukee Public Schools playground wading pools opened this week and MPD, together with MFD, are reminding people not to open fire hydrants.

It is dangerous and against the law to open fire hydrants without permission. Illegally opened hydrants cause water pressure to drop, making it difficult to put out a fire. When untrained persons with the wrong tools open hydrants, the hydrants do not function properly and must be repaired. Only the Fire Department, the Milwaukee Water Works, and specially permitted projects are allowed to open hydrants. The drinking water utility owns and maintains the hydrants. Illegally opened hydrants waste millions of gallons of treated water.

Following are some tips to share as the weather heats up:

  • Breaking open a hydrant makes it unusable to put out a fire
  • An open hydrant lowers water pressure and hampers firefighting
  • The strong spray of water is hazardous to children
  • The water spray obstructs the view of drivers who may not see people or other vehicles in the water spray and can lead to accidents
  • It’s a crime – the penalty for tampering with a hydrant is a $1,000 fine or 30 days in jail

Report tampering and illegal hydrant opening by calling the Milwaukee Water Works’ 24-hour Control Center, (414) 286-3710.

Additionally, opening the hydrant costs all of us:

  •  Hydrant open one hour = cost to city $227
  • Hydrant open two hours = cost to city $883
  • Damaged hydrant = $850
  • Broken hydrant = $350

There are alternatives for staying cool:

Cool Spots provide a place for kids ages 6 to 17 to cool off in a water spray on the hottest summer days. Sprinklers are connected to hydrants at several Milwaukee Public Schools playgrounds. Cool Spots are open for five hours on days when the temperature is predicted to be 85 degrees or hotter or when the City of Milwaukee issues a heat advisory. During a heat advisory, Cool Spots will be open Monday – Friday, 1 p.m. – 6 p.m. All playgrounds will be closed Wed., July 4 for Independence Day.

  • Auer Avenue, 2721 W. Auer. Open Mon.-Fri., 1 p.m.-6 p.m., June 18-Aug. 10
  • Carmen Playfield, 7320 W. Carmen. Open Mon.-Fri., 1 p.m.-6 p.m., June 18-Aug. 10
  • Columbia Playground, 1354 W. Columbia. Open Mon.-Fri., 1 p.m.-6 p.m., June 18-Aug. 10
  • Franklin Square, 2643 N. 13th St. Open Mon.-Fri., 1 p.m.-6 p.m., June 18-Aug. 10
  • Green Bay Ave. School, 3872 N. 8th St. Open Mon.-Fri., 1 p.m.-6 p.m., June 18-Aug. 10
  • Starms Discovery School, 2035 N. 25th. Open Mon.-Fri., 1 p.m.-6 p.m., June 18-Aug. 10
  • Gwen T. Jackson School (formerly 21st St. School), 2121 W. Hadley. Open Mon.-Fri., 1 p.m.-6 p.m.,

Wading pools are open June 18 – Aug. 10 for children ages 8 and younger.

  • Burbank Playground, 6035 W. Adler Mon.-Fri., 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Burnham Playground, 1755 S. 32nd Mon.-Fri., 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Enderis Park, 2938 N. 72nd Mon.-Fri., 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Sat. and Sun., 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
  • Holt Playground, 1716 W. Holt Mon.-Fri., 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Merrill Park, 461 N. 35th Mon.-Fri., 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Modrejewski Playground, 1020 W. Cleveland Mon.-Fri., 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Ohio Playground, 974 W. Holt Mon.-Fri., 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
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