[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Unity 11-8-2001 by Ord. No. O-13-01. Amendments noted where applicable.]
These regulations are adopted and implemented to achieve the following general purposes and objectives:
To set forth standard criteria for the specification and location of fire hydrants installed throughout the municipality of Unity Township. This standard applies to all fire hydrants, including dry hydrants and wall hydrants.
To regulate the intentional or unintentional obstruction, damage or misuse of fire hydrants.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Accepted by or approved by the Township officials.
- DRY HYDRANT
- A permanent piping system, normally used for drafting or as a support device for interior water distribution devices.
- FIRE HYDRANT
- A valved connection on a water supply system having one or more outlets and that is used to supply hose and Fire Department pumpers with water.
- MUNICIPAL AUTHORITY
- The Latrobe Municipal Authority or the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County or their successors.
- MUNICIPAL WATER LINE EXTENSION
- Any new line, extension of an existing line or replacement of an existing water line having a diameter of six inches or greater.
- ORNAMENTAL FIRE HYDRANT
- Any actual or fake fire hydrant or any object which is not connected to an adequate water supply and could be mistaken for a serviceable fire hydrant due to its shape, color, appearance or location.
- PLANNED BUILDING GROUP
- Multiple structures or subdivision developments constructed on a parcel or parcels under the ownership, control or development by an individual, a corporation, a partnership or a firm.
- PRIVATE ROAD
- An accessway normally intended for vehicular use and not dedicated as a public street.
- PUBLIC ROAD
- Any thoroughfare which has been dedicated for vehicular use by the public.
- SERVICEABLE FIRE HYDRANT
- Any fire hydrant used to supply water to a fire department for the purpose of supporting fire-fighting operations.
Any subdivision plan, planned building group or any site plan presented to the Township for approval shall provide details of the location of all fire hydrants. The fire hydrants provided for can either be installed immediately at the cost of the contractor or the appropriate funds can be placed in escrow with the Treasurer of the Township of Unity, the same to be erected at such time as sufficient houses are built within 660 feet of the same; provided, however, that should they be installed immediately, then an escrow fund to ensure the payment of the tax to be levied thereon, covering the payment due on the fire hydrants for the first three years, shall be established by the contractor prior to the approval of any plan.
All municipal water line extensions installed along roadways within the Township, whether installed by the municipal authority, private contractors or municipality, shall be required to locate a fire hydrant every 1,200 feet along the extension. Such extensions shall have the first hydrant placed at the point of tap onto the existing line. If an existing hydrant is located within 1,200 feet of the extension tap point, the first hydrant can be located at a point measured 1,200 feet from said existing hydrant, but in no case shall fire hydrants be located further than 1,200 feet from the next closest hydrant. Additional hydrants shall be required every 1,200 feet thereafter. This rule shall apply to all public or private water line extensions with a diameter of six inches or greater.
Fire hydrants for areas of multifamily and commercial structures shall be installed within 500 feet from the structure but not less than 50 feet from the structure.
All commercial structures with standpipes and/or sprinkler systems must have a hydrant installed within 200 feet and not less than 50 feet from the Fire Department connection.
All fire hydrants located in parking areas shall be protected by barriers that will prevent physical damage from vehicles without obstructing hydrant operations.
All fire hydrants shall be located no less than six feet and no more than eight feet from the curb or edge of the paved surface throughout the Township.
Fire hydrants shall not be supplied by lines of less than six inches in diameter.
No person other than those authorized by the Township or the Water Authority shall paint any fire hydrant.
Ornamental fire hydrants shall not be located in any yard location where they can be mistaken for a serviceable hydrant used for fire protection.
Only approved fire hydrants installed to water authority specifications shall be installed as part of the fire protection system within the Township of Unity. All fire hydrants shall contain three service outlets. One outlet shall be National Standard Thread sized 4.5 inches terminating with a male thread and cap. There shall be 2.5 inch outlets terminating the male thread and caps. The thread size for the 2.5 inch connections shall be consistent with the connections of the fire department that services the area.
It shall be the responsibility of the installer to ensure the hydrant is fitted with the correct thread for the service area. Any changes necessary will be the responsibility of the installer.
When the infrastructure is being installed, and prior to the location and construction of buildings or portions thereof, the water supply for fire protection, either temporary or permanent, shall be made available prior to delivery of combustible materials. Temporary water supplies must be approved by the Unity Township Ordinance Officer.
It shall be unlawful for any person to reduce the effectiveness of operation of any serviceable fire hydrant by obstructing in any way the access to any connection.
It shall be unlawful for any person to cause damage to or misuse any serviceable fire hydrant so as to prevent or restrict its operational effectiveness.
It shall be unlawful for a serviceable fire hydrant to be used for any reason other than its intended use of public fire protection unless written permission has been received from the Unity Township Ordinance Officers or the Municipal Authority.
It shall be unlawful for any person or property owner to allow bushes, shrubbery, trees or other types of vegetation to grow large enough to obstruct from clear view a serviceable fire hydrant as seen from the street or roadway.
Any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall be guilty of a summary offense and shall be subject to a penalty of not more than $1,000, recoverable with cost of prosecution before a District Justice, and, in the event that such penalty and costs are not paid, shall be subject to imprisonment in the Westmoreland County Jail for a period of not more than 30 days. Each such person shall be deemed guilty of a separate offense for every day during any portion of which any violation of any provisions of this chapter is committed, continued or permitted by such person and shall be punishable therefore as provided by this chapter.