Examining the maps and fire zones together
“The goal of the exercise is to create a mutual language”
Explaining about the Firefighting Unit to the Ground Units
A Firefighting plane during the Exercise A year has passed since the Mount Carmel Forest Fire, the worst in Israel’s history. As a result, Israel received its first firefighting aircrafts. With 150 fires, 1200 flights and 500 flight hours, the Aerial Firefighting Unit, soon to be armed with new planes, is prepared for any scenario
Widespread cooperation took place with the “Chim-Nir” Company, the Israel Nature and Parks Authority and the Firefighting & Rescue Authority traveling south together, for a joint exercise with the Firefighting Unit.
The Aerial Firefighting Unit practiced navigation maneuvers together with the rest of the authorities and commenced an informational day on the subject.
It all started with a tour of the “Chim-Nir” Company’s landing strip, during which explanations were given on the unique structure and capabilities of the firefighting planes. The exercise began immediately after, with the aerial and ground forces attempting to deal with various scenarios.
“In this exercise, we’re gaining experience in a number of cases”, explained Captain Oren, the Field Officer of the Unit. “That’s because a fire has a number of parameters like local weather, wind and temperature, which affect the way of dealing with it”.
The forces in the exercise had to work together and choose the most efficient way to fight the fire, while communicating with the forces on ground and in the planes.
“We’re expecting to allow all forces the ability to communicate with the pilots”, said Major Nissim, Deputy Commander of the Unit. “The goal of the exercise is particularly to create a mutual language, to make everyone get to know one another and see the firefighting job from a different perspective”.
Coming Soon: Two New Planes
These days, as part of the unit’s effort to create a mutual language, it is building common control aids.
“We’re planning to have a common map with all the relevant layers in the next month”, accentuated Major Nissim. The Firefighting Unit is also planning on making additional changes: The unit’s Field Officers will tour and patrol areas in which there is a higher chance of fire issues in order to be able to provide quicker response. In addition, the seven current firefighting aircrafts will be joined by two other planes.
“The current planes have issues with accessibility and ground obstacles”, explained a source in the Firefighting & Rescue Authority, “These restrictions take time and that time is critical to us”.