Victoria’s fleet for the 2017-18 summer season is made up of 49 aircraft.
The fleet is made up of specialised aircraft that are strategically positioned across the state so they are available for a range of different types of fires and terrain to provide the best operational outcomes.
This summer there will be 28 aircraft across 24 locations operating on immediate response.
Immediate response or pre-determined dispatch enables aircraft to respond to fires at the same time as fire trucks and is well established and proven across the state.
Rapid response in the early stages helps to keep small fires, small.
Major fire operations will continue to be supported by two Large Air Tankers (LATs), based at Avalon.
The fleet will also be supported by two centrally located large orange Air-Cranes, Based at Essendon and Moorabbin.
This year’s fleet includes one additional helicopter to be based at Bacchus Marsh.
The helicopter will be on pre-determined dispatch and have a primary response focus of the northern and western metropolitan areas.
Returning to bolster the fleet this year are four fixed-wing aircraft, located in the north and north-west of the state to support crop farmers in the Mallee and Wimmera area.
Firebird 300 will continue to be used as an aerial intelligence gathering helicopter.
Victoria operates one of the most sophisticated fire-bombing aircraft fleets in the world.
Victoria’s aircraft fleet is jointly funded by the Commonwealth and Victorian Governments, with the Commonwealth supporting operation of the Air-Cranes and Sikorsky helicopters as part of a national fleet.