Air International 2018-12
M.Broadbent - Firehawk /Parapublic/
One of the three S-70 Firehawks in service with the LA County Fire Department fights a large wildfire. This agency is to receive two more examples of the type.
Unlike other helicopters used for fire-fighting, the Firehawk doesn't have an underslung bucket but rather a 1,000-gallon capacity belly water tank which is refilled either on the ground or with a retractable snorkel.
Sikorsky says Firehawk's UH-60 ancestry gives the helicopter the manoeuvrability, control responsiveness, tail rotor authority and power margin required in the demanding environment flying around wildfires.
Consistent and accurate water drops to avoid breaks in the fire line so the water penetrates vegetation are important aspects of aerial fire-fighting.