Water trucks are specially designed vehicles with a tank in the back to hold water and pumping equipment with spray nozzles. The truck tank uses a hydraulic system to pump the water out through the controlled nozzles. Water truck tanks can hold between 500 and 5,000 gallons of water. There are many situations in which water trucks are not only helpful, but essential. Some examples include:
Billowing dust presents a hazard to workers. Water trucks are used to keep the dust down, especially during an earth-moving operation. Often, water trucks will follow grading equipment to stamp down the dirt as the graders level out the ground. Water trucks used for construction often contain between 4,000 and 5,000 gallons of water and use a gravity system with spray nozzles.
Most fire engines do not carry water; they typically rely on fire hydrants to provide water that they need to fight fires. However, for fires in rural areas or for forest fires, water trucks have proven to be essential equipment for fighting out-of-control blazes. Firefighters can also use water trucks to wet down areas to help prevent the spread of fires.
Water trucks are used to deliver recycled water. This water is delivered to areas that need water for construction, sewer flushing, or street washing. This water is not clean enough for human consumption, so it works great for these other applications.
Water trucks have also proven to be essential in many other types of operations — for example, construction, mining, and compaction.