Sometimes a fleet of firefighters on ground isn’t enough to combat a rapidly-spreading wildfire—especially in areas with more treacherous terrain. In these situations, aerial firefighting helps to control the spread of the fire more quickly than traditional methods.
Aerial firefighting began around 1920 with the first attempts at dropping water from aircraft onto a fire. Most of these attempts were unsuccessful during this era, but they provided a platform for future initiatives through the USFS (U.S. Forest Service). In 1935, the Aerial Fire Control Experimental Project was created. At this point, aircraft became important for fire detection, but were still somewhat incapable of successfully extinguishing rapidly-spreading fires with water and fire retardant. It wasn’t until 1954 when a partnership between the USFS and other organizations produced an effective water dropping system using a TBM-1C bomber. This was put to the test during the Jamieson Fire, which occurred in southern California in 1954.
Inspired by agricultural spraying techniques, “helitankers” soon became the next progression in aerial firefighting. These easy-to-maneuver helicopters could deliver over 100 gallons of water when they were first introduced. With firefighting helicopters came “heli-rappellers”—firefighters who rappelled down to the fire as a ground force.
In the 1960s, surplus military aircraft became another effective way to combat wildfires. Planes like the B-25, Douglas B-26 and Lockheed PSV could carry 1,000 gallons of water. They also deployed “smokejumpers” or firefighters who parachuted from planes to help control ground fire. Smokejumpers became very effective, and smokejumper bases are located across western portions of the United States today.
Create your own personalized firefighting turnout gear online with Fire-Dex’s Firewriter. Build your gear from the bottom up and see your choices as they are made. EASY!
Simply, choose your materials, choose your options and write your specifications online. That’s it! I said it was easy!
Give Fire-Dex’s FireWriter a test run and create your own custom turnout gear!
Taking an event booth from transport, to complete set up can be an arduous task. Our team at Fire-dex did not take our task lightly…we lifted, pushed, pulled and eventually, the Fire-Dex Challenge came together! Special shout-out to Inflatable Images for making our interactive inflatable so awesome!
What is the Fire-Dex Challenge? This year, Fire-dex returns with a tough challenge- a maze meant for the absolute bravest and brightest competitors around. Are you at FDIC this week? Come to our booth #311 and give it a try.
Why? Cash. Cold hard cash will be awarded twice daily Thursday-Saturday.
Here are our plans:
Twice per day during the show on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Fire-Dex will be giving away $2,000 cash awards, and a set of custom gear and a pair of leather boots. At the show now? Look up – that would be the Firedex boot. It is amazing – constructed by the same guys that worked for Nike, Adidas and Timberland worldwide brands. They understand fit, and they understand comfort.
$2000 cash drawings will take place:
- Thursday 3p-5:30p
- Friday 1:30p-5:00p
- Saturday Noon-2:30p
Like our Facebook page now for additional chances to win. See you there!