North Texas house burns because local authorities switched off hydrants "to fight terrorism"

A house in North Texas burned down killing two occupants (me stupid, me misread article, no one die) because the local authorities had switched off the fire-hydrants to stop terrorists from poisoning the water supply through them (?!?!). As Schneier sez, "This pegs the stupid-meter." At 11.

He explains all the district's hydrants, including those in Alexander Ranch, have had their water turned off since just after 9/11 - something a trade association spokesman tells us is common practice for rural systems.

"These hydrants need to be cut off in a way to prevent vandalism or any kind of terrorist activity, including something in the water lines," Hodges said.

But Hodges says fire departments know, or should have known, the water valves can be turned back on with a tool.

Wait wait wait. Turned back on with a tool? So these fire-hydrants will prevent terrorists who are capable of poisoning the water supply through them, but only if they're incapable of getting a tool?

Are the fire hydrants in your neighborhood turned on?

(via Schneier)