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Chicago Firefighters dig out Fire Hydrants during Blizzard 2011

Chicago Firefighters dig out Hydrants 1 During the Chicago Blizzard of 2011, Chicago Firefighters were looking for Fire Hydrants in case of a fire. They were also digging them out of the snow drifts. Many of Chicago's Fire Hydrants are frozen solid and do not work. I guess more people need to die before the problem is fixed. I am glad Daley is leaving, the next mayor of chicago has a mess. Photo by Patrick McDonough


Frozen hydrants hamper firefighters at South Side
By Caroline Kyungae Smith

Tribune reporter

2:52 a.m. CST, February 4, 2011
Frozen hydrants hampered Chicaago firefighters battling an extra-alarm blaze in an unoccupied building being rehabbed on the South Side early this morning.

About 2 a.m., fire crews were in the area of 8000 S. Paulina St. in the Gresham neighborhood when they detected smoke, according to Fire Media Affairs spokesman Larry Langford.

They looked for a fire and found an unoccupied three-story structure undergoing rehabilitation engulfed in flames, Langford said.

The firefighters reported the fire and immediately raised it to a still and box alarm, which calls in a squad company.

Initially there was a problem getting water as nearby fire hydrants were frozen, Langford said. As a result, the fire was raised to a 2-11 alarm to bring in additional engines, trucks and equipment.

"Thankfully, Streets and Sanitation had plowed the streets so we were able to get our engines close," Langford said.

As of 3 a.m., no injuries were reported and the fire was under control, he said.