Nfld. & Labrador

Faster, fuel-thrifty water bomber launched

The Newfoundland and Labrador government says a newly acquired water bomber will add muscle to its ability to conquer forest fires.
The second of four new water bombers has been delivered to the Newfoundland and Labrador government. (CBC)

The Newfoundland and Labrador government says a newly acquired water bomber will add muscle to its ability to conquer forest fires.

Natural Resources Minister Kathy Dunderdale says the new water bombers are essential to protecting the province's forests. ((CBC))

A Bombardier 415 is the second new aircraft to join the province's fleet this year.

"It's extremely important," said Natural Resources Minister Kathy Dunderdale, who toured an airport hangar in St. John's Monday where the aircraft was shown to reporters.

"As you know, we have a lot of forest fires on an annual basis [and] a lot of those fires take place in the interior, so this is the most efficient and effective way to get those fires and minimize the impact they have on our forestry resource."

Last year, the government earmarked $120 million for a multi-year program to replace its aging water bomber fleet with four new planes.

The third and fourth aircraft in the purchase agreement are scheduled to be delivered next April and next July.

The government operates six planes to fight fires and keeps four light helicopters under contract during fire season.  

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