Spray-painted fire hydrants costing San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — San Francisco officials say spray-painted fire hydrants are creating a public safety threat and costing the city tens of thousands of dollars.

Bill Gunn, with the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, says 35 to 40 hydrants have been spray-painted in recent months. Though some may consider the work public art, Gunn tells the San Francisco Chronicle (http://bit.ly/P0A2uB ) that the city has to repair the hydrants at a cost of about $4,000 each.

That's because the hydrants have tags stamped and painted on them that tell firefighters their water pressure, distance from a shutoff valve and the water main they are connected to. Gunn says first responders could lose precious time if that information isn't immediately available.

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Information from: San Francisco Chronicle, http://www.sfgate.com