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Timely Rescue of the Fire Hydrant at Serrente Plaza

Cynthia Lan
The CATF-5 fire department and police helping out during the explosion of fire hydrants at Serrente Plaza.

On the peaceful Sunday morning of February 11, 2024, a surprising incident happened on Serrente Plaza, a street nearby Yorba Linda High School. Many students from YLHS witnessed or heard about this unusual sight. A fire hydrant exploded, spewing powerful water estimated to be about sixteen feet high. The water soon spread and flooded the whole street.

Local firefighters quickly responded to the unusual scene and cautiously approached the eruption. Once the loud sound of water caused nearby residents to come out one after another, the water level on the street was already up to their ankles. People took out their cameras to record the scene. Within moments, three police cars arrived, followed closely by the CATF-5 fire department.

Key players in this timely rescue and recovery operation were the hard-working firefighters and utility workers who masterfully responded to the situation. They used professional tools to tackle the problem head-on and get the situation under control.

There were also some challenges encountered during the operation because the fire hydrants spit out large amounts of water; stemming the flow was a top priority. CATF-5 firefighters needed to find and close the appropriate water valves. However, the valve was located next to the fire hydrant spraying water, so sudden flows of the deep water impeded the firefighters’ operation. Despite the difficulties, the professionalism of the fire brigade ensured the safety of residents while also mitigating the impact of leaking fire hydrants on residents. As one of the locals impacted by the explosion, Christine Serbu (10) explains, “The water came pouring down and flooded the whole street. It [was] so deep that I thought I could swim in it… at the time, I could only stand in the garage and watch [the firefighters] fix it.” 

When the water flow was successfully cut off, warm applause erupted from the surrounding area, and residents expressed their gratitude for the timely intervention and efficient repairs. This incident is a reminder of the vital role our emergency responders play in ensuring the safety and well-being of our communities. We are grateful to our community for pulling together in the face of unexpected challenges and to those who are working tirelessly to keep us safe.

This event provides students with valuable lessons in awareness, preparedness, and community engagement. It emphasizes the importance of remaining alert in an emergency and knowing that asking for help is an important skill. Everyone should work together during situations akin to this and build a safe and connected community.

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About the Contributor
Cynthia Lan, Photojournalist
Cynthia Lan is a sophomore at Yorba Linda High School, and she is eager to embark on her second year at The Wrangler. She is a member of the women's varsity swimming team. Her favorite subject is biology. Outside of school, Cynthia enjoys watching movies, spending time with friends and family, and listening to music. On weekends, she is at the pool and practices swimming with her swim club. In the future, Cynthia hopes to study sports medicine, because it is what she loves. Cynthia wants to publish impactful articles through the newspaper and engage the Yorba Linda community positively.

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