West Lawn

NBC 5 Responds: Chicago Fire Hydrant Spilling Water For 4 Weeks Gets Fixed

Marie Gonzalez. called it a "waste of water that wasn’t necessary" and said she was concerned about flooding if the hydrant continued to spill water into the colder months.

NBC Universal, Inc.

A fire hydrant in the West Lawn neighborhood spilled gallons and gallons of water for more than four weeks until NBC 5 Responds got involved and the city repaired it, according to resident Marie Gonzalez.

Gonzalez said firefighters opened the hydrant on West 68th Place for testing on Sept. 2, but the water continued to spew after they left.

"Of course, it was a concern for myself and our neighbors here in the area,” Gonzales said.

Gonzaelez said she reported the open hydrant to the city. 

"We just kept getting the same response. Nothing was happening. No one was coming out to look at it and nothing was being done," Gonzalez said.

She called it a "waste of water that wasn’t necessary" and said she was concerned about flooding if the hydrant continued to spill water into the colder months.

NBC 5 Responds analyzed Chicago's 311 service data and found 20,673 reports of open fire hydrants since Jan. 1, 2019.

The Chicago Department of Water Management said every fall, the Chicago Fire Department services fire hydrants across the city in order to prepare them to resist freezing in the coming winter.

"Some older hydrants break or fail to close completely during testing and are reported for repair," said a department spokesperson. "The Chicago Department of Water Management triages the types of repairs needed and executes them as quickly as possible."

A spokesperson for the Chicago Fire Department said the department reports any failed hydrants. The spokesperson also said if a hydrant is open at a fire scene and cannot be closed, there is another hydrant in most areas less than 400 feet away and it would be used.

NBC 5 Responds contacted the city regarding the open hydrant near Gonzalez’s home, and several hours later a water department crew arrived at the scene to make repairs.

"I’m glad that they’re finally out here taking care of the issue," Gonzalez said.

Contact Us