If your house is on fire, time is critical. With winter on the horizon, there's a very real possibility your neighborhood's local fire hydrant will be snowed in. Last winter, most fire hydrants throughout the town were either covered or poorly tended to. The time it would take for the fire department to dig out the hydrant can cost valuable minutes in securing a water supply. As such, the fire department requests that residents who have fire hydrants on or near their property clear it following snowfall.