ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. – When Wayne Dowell looked across Spring Drive in Affton Wednesday, he saw a green fire hydrant and wondered why it wasn’t the bright yellow color that’s hard to miss.

“It’s just strange that it’s green,” the retired schoolteacher said. “It matches the grass and everything.”

Neighbor Kevin Venturella said, “Right now, it’s a little camouflaged.”

A spokesperson for Missouri American Water tells us the green color is a paint primer. The final coat of paint should occur within a few days. The water company selects which hydrants will be painted based on how long they’ve been in service.

Affton Protection District Fire Chief Aaron Rhodes has had residents asking questions on whether or not the green color will keep firefighters from being able to locate a hydrant in an emergency.

According to Rhodes, firefighters use GPS mapping to know where each fire hydrant is. Even if some hydrants are green for a few days, firefighters will know where they are.

“We pull up a map when we’re going to an emergency,” said Rhodes. “If there’s a fire, we’ll know that there’s a hydrant in those areas.”

American Water is in the process of painting nearly 400 hydrants across St. Louis County this year.