An uncontrolled fire can easily become a catastrophic event, involving the loss of human life, properties and natural resources, as well as causing pollution. Responding to these incidents immediately is essential, therefore, these are cases for the firefighting helicopters.
Fires can happen in different settings, such as urban areas, industrial parks or forests. Each type of fire must be approached in specific manners in order to control it, otherwise it may spread to nearby zones and ravage wide areas of land.
The firefighting helicopters contribute to a more detailed observation than that made possible by planes, since helicopters have the capability to hover above a fixed point and perform vertical movements. This makes it possible to determine the dimension of the problem and develop a strategy to fight the fire.
What does a firefighting operation with helicopters involve?
Once the problem has been detected, it is time for firefighting helicopters to take action. There are different methods that can be used. One of them is the Bambi Bucket, a container supported by cables that can transport a huge amount of water which can be released on a defined area. Some models have an integrated suction pump system to replenish the container, making the operation more agile. Furthermore, there are helicopters with a ventral water tank that allows them to carry great volumes of water.
Helicopters can become great allies of firefighting teams, since these are complex operations in which coordination and time are crucial factors. The setting is usually chaotic and aggressive. The use of firefighting helicopters along with other transports is a task that requires expert personnel, with specialized training and a great service vocation.
Because of their response time and moderate fuel consumption, firefighting helicopters are ideal to locate and attack seats of fire, since they can carry water and different chemicals, such as special types of foam and gel that can stop the fire from spreading.
A supplier of these services requires aircraft maintained in optimal conditions, that can stand up to the challenge the mission implies, as well as personnel with a superior training. Finally, helicopter pilots deserve a special mention, since they risk everything in the noble mission of saving the lives and properties of others, and protecting the forests, fields and natural surroundings.