Houston gives fake fire hydrant a serial number

AP News
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Posted: Dec 08, 2009 9:18 PM

Houston city workers mistakenly thought a fake fire hydrant was the real thing, painted it blue and gave it a serial number. But the homeowner realized the mistake and contacted the city. Debbie Vogelsang told KPRC-TV that she was concerned that painting the old hydrant in the city's colors could cause dangerous confusion during a fire.

Her boyfriend, Brian Smith, bought the surplus fire hydrant at a garage sale three years ago, painted it red and plopped it next to his palm trees.

But a Houston maintenance worker last week repainted it yellow and blue and added a serial number.

Vogelsang the same day e-mailed the city.

Executive Assistant Fire Chief Rick Flanagan said the city will remove the serial number and a reflector wrongly indicating the fire hydrant was the real thing.

A public workers spokesman said the matter is under investigation.

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Information from: KPRC-TV, http://www.click2houston.com