Tandem Pumping

Issue 9 and Volume 137.

Tandem Pumping FEATURES photo by James Lesnick Are you getting all the water you can out of your hydrants? Establishment of an effective water supply is vital to practically all successful fire suppression operations. Large fires frequently tax available fire department resources, requiring long hose layouts and many pumpers. A method of more efficiently utilizing department resources and available water in a water main is tandem pumping, i.e., two pumpers receiving their water supply from the same hydrant. Too often restricted as a hydraulics class curiosity, this operation can, with pre-planning and training, become an important and routine fire control mechanism. Hydrants closest to an incident quickly become committed in the early stages of a fire. As the scale of the incident increases, so do the water requirements. Units responding on additional alarms must lay from more distant hydrants. This increases the amount of hose and pumpers necessary to relay…

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