Students With Cal Fire Train for Aerial Firefighting

Students from throughout California are attending this interagency course in the tactical supervision of firefighting aircraft.

Posted: May 3, 2018 7:56 PM
Updated: May 3, 2018 7:58 PM

Redding, CALIF - Fighting fire from the air is often one of the most hazardous activities in wildland firefighting. That is why trainees from all over California Thursday participated in simulated aerial firefighting after learning skills in the classrooms.
During the two-week course, students participated in both classroom and aerial training.
The first week, April 23rd to April 27th, classroom training takes place in Sacramento.
Full flight operations from the Redding Air Attack Base are currently being conducted this week, April 30th to May 4th. Students today coordinated air tankers, helicopters, and smokejumper firefighting aircraft, on a simulated fire in the Oak Run and Whitmore areas.


Here’s how it works when aircraft are fighting a fire high above is the air attack plane.
From this aircraft is where the shots are all of the shots are called during an active fire.
They control all of the other aircraft in the area.
Helicopters fly much closer to the fire and carry buckets of water to bring to specific points on the fire.
The Choppers can also drop crews off to specific areas of the burn that may need it.
The biggest of all the aircraft are the tankers.
These large aircraft are brought in by a lead plane that shows them the line they should take.
Then the tankers will drop some or all of their payload on the fire.
Today the fire wasn’t real, just a simulated 20-acre brush fire which was marked by smoke bombs but these tankers primary mission is to keep any fire that should break out under control. That’s why this training is so important.

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