10 things to know about the Air-Crane

Helicopter 743, an Erickson Air-Crane
Helicopter 743, an Erickson Air-Crane, drafting retardant on the Beaver Fire in northern California, August 12, 2014. Photo by Bill Gabbert.

10 things to know about the Erickson Air-Cranes:

  1. The tank can hold 2,500 gallons (9,500 liters) of water or retardant.
  2. It has a fuel capacity of 1,300 gallons (4,900 liters).
  3. Erickson Air Crane Company bought the manufacturing license and type certificate from Sikorsky in 1992.
  4. It’s predecessor was the military version, the CH-54 Tarhe.
  5. It has an optional front-mounted water cannon that can shoot water horizontally at 300 gallons per minute.
  6. Erickson assigns the helicopters names, i.e., Elvis, Incredible Hulk, Isabelle, and Olga.
  7. Air-Cranes lifted and installed the top section of the CN Tower in Toronto, and the statue on the top of the U.S. Capitol building.
  8. It cruises at about 105 mph (169 k/h).
  9. The tank can be refilled by pumping directly into it through a hose, drafting through a suction hose, or using an optional skimming tube which can be lowered as the helicopter flies near the surface of a body of water. Drafting or skimming takes 45 seconds.
  10. It carries a crew of three: two pilots and an observer.

One thought on “10 things to know about the Air-Crane”

  1. There was an Air-Crane at the Omak, WA airport 7-4-15. I forgot to make note of its number tho.

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