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Aerial operations

This is a basic outline, pending a more complete article with assistance from Bushfires NT.

Aircraft used are:

    Fixed wing Air Tractor with hopper capacity of 3000 litres

    Rotary wing (helicopter) using Bambi buckets with capacity 500 litres

There are two Primary Response Zones in the Darwin rural area for air operations:

    25km radius from Batchelor airstrip

    25km radius from Hughes airstrip

In addition, water bombing aircraft will be able to operate out of Darwin airport in an emergency.

Aircraft may be used outside these zones if necessary.

On days of declared fire bans aircraft are placed on standby at Batchelor. 

Hughes is used when there is a wildfire within its zone requiring air support. Pumps and hoses are set up and the facility manned by volunteers until relieved by Bushfires NT personnel.

Water bombing aircraft are a very useful tool in wildfire suppression, but should never be considered a total solution. They cannot operate after dark, in heavy smoke or other poor light conditions.

Ground crews should never place themselves in a situation where their safety depends on aerial support.

Primary Response Zones