Most property and business owners probably have no idea it’s there, but thieves have taken notice.
Any building that houses an indoor sprinkler system, such as large retailers, factories, college dorms or nursing homes, have a simple bronze or cast-iron hose connector on the outside of the building, said Richmond Fire Chief Buzzy Campbell.
These connectors allow firefighters to attach a supply hose from a fire engine to boost water pressure of the sprinkler system, the chief said.
The fire department conducts inspections of buildings once or twice a year, but Campbell was just driving through the Richmond Centre retail complex Thursday when he noticed that six hose connectors had been removed from buildings.
Campbell alerted Fire Marshall Mark McFerron, who investigated further.
McFerron found one connector missing from Tractor Supply, one missing from Lowe’s Home Improvement, three missing from the Carriage Gate Shopping Center and one missing from the Richmond Mall.
A missing connector makes a firefighter’s job “doubly hard when we don’t know that it’s missing,” the chief said. “It changes our tactics when we fight a fire.”
Parts and labor to replace a connector could run around $500, although the “scrap value of the metal is probably no more than $20 to $25,” Campbell estimated.
The missing connectors have been reported to the police department, who will alert local scrap dealers of the stolen items, he said.
According to the Richmond Police Department’s Friday press release, the Carriage Gate Shopping Center connectors were made by Elkhart Brass Manufacturing and their estimated value is $1,200.
Business owners are responsible for their own hose connectors and should be on the lookout for any suspicious activity near them, the fire chief advised.
Putting a protective cage around the connector area is one solution, he said, but a key would have to be provided to the fire department. The fire department can secure a connector with its own lock with the owners cooperation.
Crystal Wylie can be reached at cwylie@
or 623-1669, Ext. 6696.
- Local News
YMCA, county district to provide after-school care
The Telford YMCA is partnering with the Madison County School District to provide after-school child care for kindergarten and elementary students.
YMCA Executive Director Dave Wallace and Madison County School Superintendent Elmer Thomas announced the partnership Monday afternoon.
Memories bloom in May’s garden
After realizing a story was being written about 96-year-old Lucille May, tenants of Willis Manor gathered in the lobby to share stories about her.
Affectionately called “Mamaw” by other residents and workers at the apartment building, May has spent the four years of her residence transforming an outdoor garden that was overtaken by weeds. It’s now a thriving flowerbed, complete with interesting rocks, decorations and conversation.
Water Street storm-water digging begins
Caisson holes were drilled and then filled with concrete and steel poles Monday to create a retaining structure to shore up the Allstate Insurance building foundations' firm when excavation for the Water Street Stormwater Improvement Project begins.
Digging for 20 ton, 6 by 7 foot concrete box culverts will begin today, if weather permits, said Jason Hart, Richmond’s director of Planning and Zoning. The culverts will help reduce the likelihood of flooding on Water Street by carrying storm water under Main Street, the CVS parking lot and Irvine Street to a stream, he said.
RPD: Bottle bomb injures man, damages neighbor’s home
Richmond Police on Friday charged Robert Abney, 30, of Moberly Avenue, in connection with a May 30 explosion that injured Abney and damaged a neighbor’s home.
Officers were dispatched May 30 to a residence in the 500 block of Moberly Avenue to investigate the report of an explosion.
They found the remains of a plastic bottle bomb near a residence adjoining Moberly’s, according to an RPD news release. A wall of the occupied home was smoldering and grass was burned in the area, it added.
Two led police on I-75 chase from Berea
Berea Police found a man passed out and intoxicated inside his crashed vehicle on Interstate 75 Wednesday, according to a police report.
Steven Coffey, 34, of Berea, had slurred speech and was unsteady on his feet when officers arrived at the vehicle, the police report stated. They determined he was under the influence of drugs, the report stated.
A race to the finish line
Sheltered by overcast sky and supported by a cool breeze, teams competed Saturday morning in the second annual HeartChase at Richmond Centre.
Hops & Vine Festival raises money for humane society
Downtown Richmond’s Hops and Vine Festival started more than two years ago with a question.
Bill Clinton will stump for Grimes in eastern Kentucky
Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes is again calling in the “Big Dog” in her quest to unseat five-term Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell.
Former President Bill Clinton will join Grimes on Aug. 6 for a campaign rally in eastern Kentucky, according to a campaign official who would provide no further details.
Cattle farmers enjoying ‛perfect storm’
Demand is up, and cattle are selling for record prices.
At the same time, corn prices are down and fuel prices have stabilized.
That adds up to a “perfect storm” for Kentucky cattle farmers, said Gary Kelly of Paint Lick as he ate lunch Friday with his brother Jimmy at the restaurant across from the Blue Grass Stockyards.
Fire training tower going up
A new training tower for the Richmond Fire Department is rising on Four Mile Road.
Construction began Thursday on the four-story, steel-framed structure.
- More Local News Headlines
- YMCA, county district to provide after-school care