10 September 2016 (15:32 UTC-07 Tango 01) 20 Shahrivar 1395/07 Dhu I-Hijja 1437/10 Ding-You 4714
Apparently the U.S. Forest Service and the Department of Defense (DoD) think the 2018 fire season is gonna’ be big because they’ve just added another MAFFS C-130 firefighting unit to their inventory.
MAFFS stands for Modular Airborne Fire Fighting System. The Forest Service owns the MAFFS, the DoD (through state militias) provides the C-130s and personnel to operate it.
Currently there are three MAFFS units operated by the state militias of California, North Carolina and Wyoming, and one MAFFS Air Force Reserve unit out of Colorado. Since early August MAFFS have already flown 142 firefighting missions, dropping more than 3.5-million pounds (1.6-million kilos) of fire-retardant in Idaho, Nevada and Oregon. Nevada is about to become the home for a fifth MAFFS unit.
Nevada’s 152 AW High Rollers will be used to augment the units from Colorado and Wyoming, and will be based in Reno. While MAFFS fly on missions across the country, the U.S. Forest Service wanted a new MAFFS unit whose home base is in the fire prone Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest.
This year’s official fire season began MAFFS on-job-training for crews of the High Rollers: “The actual drops have been challenging and exhilarating. It’s a great feeling to see your immediate results whether we are dropping a protective line of retardant between the fire and someone’s property or dropping ‘mud’ directly on flames leaping from the tops of trees in an effort to slow the fire’s progress.”-Lietenant Colonel Tony Machabee, first member of the High Rollers to co-pilot a MAFFS mission
The U.S. Forest Service wants the new 152 AW MAFFS unit ready to launch for the 2018 wildfire season. The Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences predicts that by 2050 the official U.S. wildfire season will be three weeks longer, and for several years now the Pacific Northwest has been dealing with major fires in the official off-season.
Despite a busy wildfire season, Oregon based helicopter fire bomber operator Erickson Air Crane laid off 1-hundred people! Company administrators admitted that despite years of busy wildfire seasons they’re burned by massive debt to Wells Fargo (the evil bank owned by ‘christian’ agnostic Warren Buffett).