At approximately 6 p.m., MDT, July 1, a Modular Airborne Fire Fighting System equipped C-130 aircraft supporting firefighting missions crashed in the southwest corner of South Dakota. The aircraft was supporting the efforts against the White Draw Fire.
The cause of the crash is not known and the incident is under investigation. There are no details on the status of the aircrew available at this time.
MAFFS is a joint DOD and U.S. Forest Service program designed to provide additional aerial firefighting resources when commercial and private airtankers are no longer able to meet the needs of the forest service.
MAFFS is a self-contained aerial firefighting system owned by the U.S. Forest Service that can discharge 3,000 gallons of water or fire retardant in less than 5 seconds, covering an area one-quarter of a mile long by 100 feet wide. Once the load is discharged, it can be refilled in less than 12 minutes.