City News and Patch Staff
As the state faces what experts call the worst fire season in a century, fire officials have armed themselves with additional equipment with help from Canada.
City News Service reported Wednesday that two Bombardier 415 Super Scoopers and an Erickson S-64 Air-Crane Helitanker arrived at Van Nuys Airport from Quebec to bolster Los Angeles County Fire Department's efforts against wildfires.
The county annually leases the aircraft from the Canadian province of Quebec, where the wildfire season customarily ends in August, according to the CNS report.
The equipment is much needed in Southern California which has already seen one of the worst fire seasons. The Silver Fire near Banning started Aug. 7 and burned more than 20,000 acres before it was fully contained, according to state fire officials. In San Bernardino County, the Mountain Fire started July 15 southeast of Idyllwild and burned more than 27,000 acres. And in Los Angeles County, the Powerhouse Fire, which was sparked in late May, charred more than 30,000 acres north of Los Angeles.
Several Southern California Officials have said they knew early on this had the potential to be a particularly bad season and have been preparing themselves. Fire authorities regularly provide mutual aid. During fire and emergencies resources and equipment are taken to where they are most needed.
The recently leased fixed-wing Super Scoopers skim bodies of water at high speed and can scoop more than 1,600 gallons in 12 seconds, according to the Montreal- based manufacturer's website. They can also drop foam.
The Erickson Air-Crane Helitanker holds 2,650 gallons of water and has an adjustable flow rate, according to its Portland, Ore.-based manufacturer's web site.