Jean Preer: City needs better fire hydrant markings

Published: 03-17-2023 3:45 PM

Like many out-of-towners, my sister and I went to Northampton for the Smith College Bulb Show. We were delighted to find a parking place on Elm Street in front of Hopkins House, but when we returned, we were not delighted to find a $25 ticket for parking within 10 feet of a fire hydrant. We had carefully parked directly under a sign that said “No parking 12:01 a.m. to 6 a.m.” (no problem, it was 10 a.m.), and there were no markings on the curb or pavement, as there are in other communities, to call attention to a fire hydrant. In fact, when I got out to make sure that we were not too close to the driveway, I didn’t even notice a fire hydrant over by the sidewalk, probably 10 feet from the curb. I took photos of the sign and hydrant as mementos of our visit to Northampton, and my sister paid the fine. On the campus, we saw numerous signs directing us to the Botanic Garden. We suggest that the city of Northampton paint curbs and pavements and post signs to let visitors know where not to park.

Jean Preer



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