During the warmer months, when the hazard of a bush fire is greatly increased, Touchdown Helicopters has its fleet of helicopters, ground support maintenance units and 30,000L JetA1 fuel truck on permanent standby, ready to react to support the community.
For pro-active fire control capability, we are equipped with a Red Dragon © aerial incendiary machine. This is a fully automated, rapid-fire machine, which is fully adjustable to create the perfect fire intensity to complete any hazard reduction burn.
For reactive fire control, in both the Air Attack and Fire Bombing roles, our fire control fleet comprises
In the air
- Sikorsky UH60 (Blackhawk) 3500kg
- Bell UH1H (Huey) 1700kg
- Airbus AS350B3 (Squirrel) 1200kg
- Airbus AS350B2 (Squirrel) 750kg
On the ground
- 2 x Ford Dual Cab 4WD Utilities
- 2 x Ford Transit Maintenance Support Vans
- 1 x 30,000-Litre Semi Trailer Jet A1 Fuel Truck
All of our helicopters are deployed with a long line, cargo net and remote hook which means they can be utilised onsite to move equipment from location to location. Both Squirrels are also deployed with a utility basket for extra cargo capacity. All helicopters are configured, at a minimum, in accordance with NSW RFS standards to include –
- Wire Cutters
- Hi-viz Blades
- Belly hook
Additionally, our AS350B2 & B3 Squirrel can be fitted with passenger seating for transferring up to 5 & 6 personnel respectively.
For water bombing operations, Touchdown Helicopters operate class leading Bambi Max © multi drop aerial fire fighting buckets which are also configured with foam-injection capabilities.
Sizes are –
- 3410L for the Blackhawk.
- 1230L for the UH1H’s
- 910L for the B3 squirrel
- 680L for the B2 squirrel
But Touchdown Helicopters fire control response is about more than just the impressive selection of helicopter platforms and support equipment we have available. It also about the experience and expertise we provide both in the cockpit and on the ground.
Our Pilots are selected for their expertise and proven experience on the types of helicopters that we operate and the work that we do. Most of our pilots have worked in the challenging terrains of either British Columbia, Canada, or the mountains and weather of PNG. The average flying hours of our pilots is over 5000 hours.
Our ground support fleet includes 2 dual cab utilities, for crew support and small capacity fuel support, 2 maintenance support vans, driven by our engineers and stocked with tools and parts, and a 30,000-litre Jet A1 semi trailer.
With our combined helicopter and ground support fleet, there is literally no place in Australia where we can’t provide an efficient, self sustained, helicopter based, fire control solution. Coupled to our extensive spare parts inventory, we can be available at short notice, and remain on-site indefinitely to get the job done.