Air Spray Ltd. announced that is has been awarded a contract for aerial firefighting by the Government of Manitoba. The Wildfire Suppression Services Contract has been issued by the Manitoba Sustainable Development Agency and is for a period of 10 years.
Air Spray will be working in partnership with Babcock International to carry out the contract. The contract includes the management, maintenance and operation of Manitoba’s fleet of seven Canadair water-bomber amphibious aircraft (four CL-415s and three CL-215s), supported by three Twin Commander “bird-dog” aircraft.
Manitoba will retain ownership of the water-bomber aircraft, parts, inventory, special tools and equipment but will transfer care and custody to the contractors.
Based on operations in prior years, the Wildfire Suppression Service will provide approximately 1,400 flying hours and 3,750 water drops per year. Operations will cover the entire province of Manitoba (649,950 square kilometres) and will help to protect communities in a population of 1.3 million people.
Lynn Hamilton, owner and president of Air Spray Ltd., responded that “the province of Manitoba can be assured that our years as a leader in the airtanker industry and experience fighting wildfires throughout Western Canada can be relied on to provide outstanding service to the province. The award of the contract is expected to provide Air Spray with additional future opportunities associated with the CL415 aircraft platform and enable us to further our dedication to the protection of our environment from wildfire.”
Mike Whalley, president of Babcock Canada, commented: “Babcock has over 30 years of fixed- and rotary-wing aerial firefighting experience throughout Europe. In 2017, our aircraft and crews carried out over 5,500 firefighting missions, dropped 174 million litres of water and logged over 20,000 hours in support of wildfire suppression.
“We deliver a fully integrated and professional aerial firefighting management service, underpinned by technology investments and mission specialist pilot training. We are delighted and honoured that the Government of Manitoba has entrusted us with this critical service, and we look forward to serving the province and protecting the natural resources and communities of Manitoba.”
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