12 June 2018 Read: 200
The start of the winter fire season was announced in style last week with an open day hosted by the Letaba Fire Protection Association (LFPA) at the ZZ2 airfield in Mooketsi. The day was attended by a role players within the firefighting community and featured special guest speakers including Mike Moja from the Department of Co-operative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs, and the acting mayor of the Mopani District Municipality, Anna Sono.
The open day was not only used as a means to communicate the importance of preventative measures in the fight against wildfires, or the advantages of having a proper working relationship amongst the members of the Association and their partners, but also to welcome a very special guest and new member to the firefighting family.
The Air Tractor, a powerful fixed wing aircraft has joined the team in Tzaneen and will offer efficient air support in the event of runaway field fires. The Air Tractor is considered to be the top of its class with an 18m wingspan, a power to weight ratio of 800 pounds to 1400 horsepower and the capability to reach speeds in excess of 220 knots. The AT-802A is the world’s largest ag aircraft and its presence here will prove invaluable to the high production agricultural industry.
For a more detailed report on the Air Tractor, its uses and who will pilot it, read this month’s AgriBulletin. In that feature we will also be speaking to the LFPA regarding their preparations for the coming fire season.