Defense

September 17, 2012

Forest Service deactivates C-130 firefighting operations

The U.S. Forest Service has deactivated the Modular Airborne Fire Fighting System-equipped military C-130 Hercules as fire conditions in the West have improved.

The 153rd Air Expeditionary Group received the notification late Sept. 14, releasing the two MAFFS planes and crews that were still operating, as well as the associated support and maintenance staff. All crews have reported back to their home stations.

The California Air National Guard’s 146th Airlift Wing, and the North Carolina Air National Guard’s 145th Airlift Wing each had a C-130 operating out of McClellan Air Tanker Base, Calif., for the last few weeks.

On Sept. 2, two C-130s from the Wyoming Air National Guard’s 153rd Airlift Wing were released from MAFFS operations in Boise, Idaho. Two C-130s from the Air Force Reserve Command’s 302nd Airlift Wing were released from duty Sept. 7.

“Although our planes and crews have returned home, we all know MAFFS can still be reactivated well into the fall,” said Air Force Lt. Col. Donald Taylor, 153rd Air Expeditionary Group acting commander. “We have had a very busy season and know it’s still too early to say the season is over for good.”

According to 153rd Air Expeditionary Group officials based in Boise, Idaho, this season has become the second-highest in MAFFS history for gallons of fire retardant dropped, surpassed only by the MAFFS season of 1994 when about 5 million gallons were dropped. This season, through Sept. 14, the MAFFS fleet released almost 2.5 million gallons of fire retardant during 1,011 drops on fires in 10 states.

MAFFS is a joint Defense Department and U.S. Forest Service program designed to provide additional aerial firefighting resources when commercial and private air tankers are no longer able to meet the Forest Service’s needs.

This is the first year since 2008 that all four MAFFS wings had been activated simultaneously, officials said.

As a self-contained aerial firefighting system owned by the U.S. Forest Service, MAFFS can discharge 3,000 gallons of water or fire retardant in less than five seconds, covering an area a quarter of a mile long by 100 feet wide. Once the load is discharged, it can be refilled in less than 12 minutes.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez

Smart-mortar will help Soldiers more effectively hit targets

Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez Nick Baldwin and Evan Young, researchers with the Armament Research Development and Engineering Center at Picatinny Arsenal, Pennsylvania, discuss the 120mm Guided Enhanced Fragmentation Mortar ...
 
 

Air Force assigns new chief scientist

The Air Force announced the service’s new chief scientist to serve as a science and technology adviser to the secretary of the Air Force and the chief of staff of the Air Force, May 21. Dr. Greg Zacharias will be the 35th chief scientist and is ready to “dive in” to his new role. “I...
 
 

TSgt promotion release delayed to allow system validation

Technical sergeant promotion selection results, originally scheduled for release May 28, will be delayed to enable the Air Force to continue to validate extensive system changes to the Weighted Airman Promotion System, officials announced. The 15E6 technical sergeant promotion cycle is the first to incorporate recent changes in the enlisted evaluation and promotion system. Recent...
 

 

Freedom completes rough water trials

The littoral combat ship USS Freedom completed Seakeeping and Structural Loads Trials, commonly referred to as Rough Water Trials in late March the Navy reported May 21. The U.S. Navy must demonstrate the seaworthiness and structural integrity of each new ship class. One of the primary ways the Navy verifies these qualities is through a...
 
 

Air Force releases Strategic Master Plan

The Air Force officially released the Strategic Master Plan May 21, which is the latest in a series of strategic documents designed to guide the organizing, training and equipping of the force over the coming decades. The SMP builds on the strategic imperatives and vectors described in the capstone document, America’s Air Force: A Call...
 
 

HYT extension possible for SrA-MSgt in 35 career fields

Eligible senior airmen, staff sergeants, technical sergeants and master sergeants in 35 Air Force specialties will be able to apply for a high year of tenure extension and, if approved, will be able to extend between 12 and 24 months past their current HYT. The Air Force is introducing several personnel and manpower initiatives to...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>