Brass Rings Taken From Chicago Hydrants


CHICAGO, Oct. 28 (UPI) — Chicago fire department and water management officials said dozens of brass rings have recently been stolen from city fire hydrants.

Barrett Murphy, first deputy commissioner of the Water Management Department, told aldermen 70 to 100 of the rings were taken in August and September. They said the thieves can sell the brass rings for about $20 each, the Chicago Tribune reported Friday.

Assistant Deputy Fire Commissioner John McNicholas said the rings are necessary components of the hydrants. The heavy brass rings, normally capped by a cast iron cover, click into the cast metal hydrants allowing hoses to be connected to the hydrants. McNicholas says each fire truck carries two spare rings that can be attached in about 90 seconds.

“Yes, we can still function,” McNicholas said. “Yes, we are delayed. But yes, it endangers lives and it could cause injuries.”

Alderman Robert Fioretti, of the city’s 2nd District, said officials should impose stiffer penalties on those caught taking the rings.

“It’s not just simple damage,” he said. “It’s health, safety and welfare.”

UPI - United Press International, Inc.

Since 1907, United Press International (UPI) has been a leading provider of critical information to media outlets, businesses, governments and researchers worldwide.

Join the Discussion

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.