Kestrel’s Night Fire Trials moved to ‘live fire’

                                                                                        Helitack 346 Ballarat March 2018

Emergency Management Victoria (EMV) have engaged Kestrel’s Bell 412 NVIS over the past two nights in Ballarat to conduct managed live fire suppression assessments.

A first for Emergency Management Victoria to engage the Bell 412 in such activities and a first for Kestrel to continue its NVIS fire trial flights onto live fire.

‘At this point in the program all of our combined expectations are being achieved through a collaborative and detailed risk management plan. The emphasis throughout these trials has been to make safety our priority whilst progressively developing capability’ Ray Cronin said (Managing Director-Kestrel)

Kestrel acknowledge the enormous support of all involved in these night trials, EMV, CFA, DELWP, NAFC, CASA and Point Trading (provision of Night Vision Imaging Systems).    Kestrel would also like to express special thanks to the CFA volunteers who provided the mantel of safety during the operations and their local hospitality.

Now that the proving flights and trials are complete Kestrel will work with CASA to finalise Kestrel’s approval to conduct NVIS fire operations as an ongoing aerial fire suppression activity.

‘It should not be underestimated what this means to the aerial firefighting sector in Australia.  EMV and the combined fire agencies who have shown leadership with this capability should be congratulated, as should CASA for dealing with uncharted territory in terms of regulation.’ Ray Cronin said.

Captain Richard Butterworth Head of Training for Kestrel has had the full backing of the company to develop this capability for Kestrel which has achieved this milestone and will advance the company  in terms of operational activity and training programs in the future.

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