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Local fire departments struggle to put out fires with city's water conservation request

Posted at 9:03 PM, Jul 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-01 20:56:59-04

BRAZOS COUNTY, Texas — While we’ve been seeing wildfires, grass fires, and brush fires, and with the city asking community members to conserve water, we see how it’s affecting a local volunteer fire department.

Chief Joe Warren with the Brazos County Fire Department says they sometimes have to rely on their own water supply to put out fires.

“The firefighters or the fire departments have to bring their own water supply and they use that, and we bring it on a truck called a tender, and those are anything that carry over 1,000 gallons or more of water,” said Chief Joe Warren, Brazos County Volunteer Fire Department Precinct 4.

One local resident says he tries to be positive and understand that there is a need for less water consumption.

“If it’s a water restriction in place, it’s for a reason,” local Bryan resident. “Everyone should try and understand the reason for the restriction and why you would want someone to be able to putt a fire out in your area as soon as possible.”

Chief Warren says when they have to go to rural areas, there’s less likely to be a pressurized water system in place.

“If we’re all the way out in south Brazos County, out in the Milican area, we’ll have to go to the nearest hydrant, fill up the trucks and take it back to the fire scene and sump so that’s very time consuming,” said Chief Warren.

He says there was a new neighborhood being built by a recent wildfire and says if it wasn’t for the water system, their resources would have been more limited.

“We were able to utilize that system, but you get further out into the county where it’s just the rural land farmland, there’s not a fire hydrant system, there’s no firefighting water,” said Chief Warren.

The local resident says he hopes local fire departments exhaust all options of putting out a fire to ensure of everyone’s safety.

“Utilize all your resources to put out a brush fire or a grass fire or any fire to ensure that you don’t really harm any wildlife or people’s homes,” said local Bryan resident.

With hot temperatures and little rain, Chief Warren is hopeful we will see more rain here in the Brazos Valley to help with drought conditions.