On a typical Saturday at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, the 16th hole may draw as many people as inhabit the entire City of Scottsdale – in a temporary structure with no fire hydrant in sight.
But thanks to an innovative partnership, fans can rest assured there’s a solid plan in place should a fire break out – a makeshift “fire hydrant” drawing from the Central Arizona Project canal.
CAP has partnered with Scottsdale Fire, the Phoenix Thunderbirds, Scottsdale Water and Capital Pumping to pump water from the CAP aqueduct to a staged fire truck that could immediately provide the necessary water should the need arise. So, although water is not readily available in the Sonoran Desert where the tournament is played, Colorado River water, which travels through a 336-mile canal stands ready as an emergency water supply for public safety purposes.
This is the third year the “Swick-queduct” – so dubbed after Deputy Chief Kerry Swick, who developed the innovative idea – has operated at the Tournament Players Club. And this year, a second system is operating at the 17th hole. Although the idea is genius, it takes a tremendous amount of cooperation and collaboration from all involved. For instance, CAP waived the typical $3,000 fee for the temporary water permit and The Thunderbirds paid for the infrastructure to make the “Swick-queduct” work.
Safety first – a common CAP mantra – working with the community to keep residents and visitors safe at what is known as the “Greatest Party on Grass!”