Hydrant inspection.

There are over 115,000 fire hydrants in London we inspect them every 4 years. Hydrant inspections are managed by the Water Team. In London, you are never more than 90 metres from a fire hydrant.


What is Hydrant Inspection?

Every water company has a duty to provide water we use to fight fire. We access the water network through fire hydrants right across London, which need regular inspection and maintenance to ensure that we can access water when we need it to keep you safe.

Our fire crews inspect the hydrants between March and October. Any repairs required are reported to London Fire Brigade Water Team who send a hydrant technician to repair the hydrant. If a major repair or hydrant renewal is required these are passed to the relevant water company to repair on our behalf. London fire hydrants are served by four different water companies, Thames Water, Affinity Water, Sutton & East Surrey Water and Essex & Suffolk Water. We liaise with the water companies to keep our hydrants working.

All about Hydrant Inspection

Why do we inspect hydrants?

If there is a fire, we need to be sure that hydrants work properly and there is an adequate supply of water. As the network is huge – and some date right back to the 1930s – it’s really important to perform regular inspections.

Did you know?

  • There are always at least 2 hydrants within 10 meters of every school in London.
  • Fire hydrants are marked with a square yellow indicator sign with a "H" symbol so they are visible to our fire crews.
  • We are continuously adding new hydrants to the network to provide adequate hydrant coverage for new developments and building projects across London.
  • Fire engines have a special hydrant ‘hoover’ that keeps hydrants in good working order.
  • Every time 6 or more fire engines are needed at an incident, a representative of the water company – known as a ‘turn cock’ – joins us at the scene. They can adjust the water pressure in the local area to make sure it’s high enough to successfully fight the fire.

What do the inspectors say?

"We inspect over 30,000 hydrants a year on a rolling schedule. That way every hydrant in London is checked at least once every 4 years. It’s just one of the ways we’re quietly working behind the scenes, keeping Londoners safe."

Spotted something wrong?

If you see a problem with a fire hydrant let us know at water@london-fire.gov.uk

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