The Spokane Valley Fire Department has noticed a rash of thefts of brass fire caps from Fire Department Connection systems at businesses in Liberty Lake.
People may be stealing them to sell to recycling companies, said Fire Marshal Greg Rogers.
The fire department uses the FDC systems, with connection points either set into the business wall or on a vertical pipe next to the building, to hook into the building’s sprinkler systems in case of a fire. That allows them to add water and boost the pressure in the system to help put out a fire, Rogers said.
The danger is that once the caps are missing, debris could get in the sprinkler system accidentally or debris could be shoved in deliberately. A rock or other object could block water from flowing through the pipe.
If a cap is gone, the business must do a back flush test that costs $700 to $1,000 to confirm that the system is clear before replacing the cap, Rogers said.