Pumping Through Long Suction Lines
Besides fighting fires, fire departments are often called upon to pump out cellars that have become flooded after heavy rains or after fires. In such cases long suetion lines are frequently necessary and lifts are encountered that are longer than the customary pumper guarantee of ten feet.
Many of the departments have developed some way to get around this difficulty. In Omaha, Neb., Sam Faulkner, master mechanic, has developed an arrangement like that illustrated. It combines the principle of the syphon with the lifting ability of the pumper.
An ejector (syphon) forms an important part of the layout. A line is connected from the hydrant to the ejector, and a line made up of larger sized hose is connected from the ejector back to the pumper. A suction line is joined from the device to the pit from which it is desired to pump water. A I strainer is placed on the end of the suction line to prevent the possibility of foreign matter entering the pump and acting as an abrasive.
In operation, the water Hows from the hydrant through the ejector and back to the suction line of the pumper. The pumper assists the water flow. The rush of water by the opening provided for the connection of the suction line creates a vacuum, and some of the water at the bottom of the pit is sucked up and discharged together with the water from the hydrant. In this way water can be lifted through large vertical distances.
The principle is not a new one, although the application is probably not well known to firemen. The theory is utilized in the construction of tools and instruments in other professions outside of the fire service.
There are no moving parts in the construction of the ejector. Essentially it consists of a Y-shaped fitting. It can be made in the fire department shops and should be useful in checking the damage done in buildings by water accumulating in basements.
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