NEW BEDFORD (WBSM) — One person parked on a New Bedford street Saturday learned the hard way why you should never block a fire hydrant with your vehicle.

While battling a kitchen fire in a third-floor apartment at 23 Beetle Street in the city’s Near North End, the crew of Engine 9 needed to connect to a hydrant and run a hose up to the apartment.

However, there was a Nissan sedan parked in front of the hydrant, forcing firefighters to have to bust its windows in order to connect the hose.

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“The crew of Engine 9 overcame an ‘obstruction’ in front of the closest hydrant and were able to secure a water supply,” the New Bedford Fire Department posted on Facebook, along with a photo of the end result.

New Bedford Fire Department via Facebook
New Bedford Fire Department via Facebook

Ward 2 City Councilor Maria Giesta has spoken out about the need to obey parking restrictions on the congested streets of the Near North End.

“Please do not park in front of a fire hydrant. You are preventing our firefighters from doing their job. Seconds count when you’re fighting a fire and saving people’s lives,” she posted to her Facebook page.

Giesta mentioned to WBSM that it’s not just about safety, it’s also about the law.

“You cannot park within 10 feet of a fire hydrant. This is the law in Massachusetts, and if you park in front of a fire hydrant you should be ticketed and towed,” she said.

“Just imagine if this was your house and family and the firefighters did not have access to the fire hydrant,” Giesta said. “Thank you to the NBFD for your courage and continuing to keep us safe.”

The New Bedford Police Department recently announced it would be “stepping up” its enforcement of parking violations in residential areas across the city, including blocking hydrants.

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