Photos copyright © 2000, Willis Lamm unless otherwise noted.

Logo © EBMUD

  A Complex Water Agency

The East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) is a multi-county public water agency that serves over one million citizens on the eastern side of San Francisco Bay. The district serves several major metropolitan cities such as Oakland and Berkeley, along with numerous industrial and suburban communities. The district includes such geographic features at the Oakland-Berkeley Hills which present complex issues with regard to both providing water service and fire protection.

Prior to World War II there was little standardization with respect to fire hydrants. The district had absorbed over two dozen original small water companies and agencies, many of whom had differing hydrant standards. In some locales the fire departments owned the hydrants. If nothing else, this inconsistency created problems with respect to hydrant maintenance and reliability.

After World War II, EBMUD met with fire agency representatives and developed their own standardized design for fire hydrants which they patented. EBMUD also took responsibility for maintenance of all fire hydrants in the district with the exception of wharf heads which remained local fire agencies' responsibility until they were phased out.

The EBMUD design was basically an improved version of the M. Greenberg's Sons "frisbee top" Model 74 and Model 75 hydrants. The EBMUD designed valve stem guide had less protrusion which reduced sidewalk obstruction. Grease ports were added so that valve stems could be lubricated without disassembling the hydrant. The barrel casting was engineered for better traffic impact resistance. Nozzles were configured at 45 degree angles to the curb line which facilitated easier "front suction" hookups.

M. Greenberg's Sons was the primary producer of these hydrants, although Mueller manufactured a small number of them also.

The hydrants produced:

The Model 71 was a single outlet design, generally placed in semi-rural areas where fire flow was not an issue. Every one we have ever located had a 2" outlet.

The Model 74 was produced in both a double 2" and double 3" configuration. (Oakland had a 3" hose outlet standard.)

The model 75 was produced in both a 2" x 4" and a 3" x 4" design.

The first EBMUD spec hydrants appeared in 1945 and are still being refurbished and placed back into service, both within EBMUD and by other agencies that purchased them at salvage for reconditioning and use within their jurisdictions.

Continue to Part 2


(Click pictures for closeups)
Model 71
Model 74
Model 75

Back to Hydrant Pictures
Questions? / Comments?
Unless otherwise noted, all contents of these WWW pages © FireHydrant.org