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Science in the City
The Science of Firefighting: Cisterns (Clip)
Date: September 10, 2014
Running Time: 00:05:16

Ever notice a brick-lined circle embedded into a street intersection? Keep an eye out and you'll see them throughout San Francisco. As part of the San Francisco Fire Department's Auxiliary Water Supply System, these brick circles indicate a cistern full of water. Join SFFD's Chief Ken Lombardi and Firefighter Hashim Anderson as they discuss the history and function of these cisterns, and demonstrate the drafting procedures used to access the water.
Urban environments like San Francisco are full of mysterious natural and human-made phenomena. Why are there so many one-footed pigeons? Where does the sewage go? Why is our “summer” in May and September? The Exploratorium is “taking it outside" to explore these and other questions in engineering, ecology, optics, waves, geology, architecture, weather, and more. Look for new episodes once a month.