More air tankers becoming available in Kansas

map wildfires kansas
The red areas represent wildfires in Kansas detected by a satellite at 4:07 p.m. MST March 6, 2017.

After numerous devastating wildfires in 2017 the Kansas Forest Service began a program to make more single engine air tankers (SEAT) available to assist firefighters on the ground.

Below are quotes from a KSN interview of agricultural pilot Bill Garrison, one of the seven pilots that Kansas can draw upon to operate a SEAT as needed now that they have gone through a day of field and tactical training.

The quicker you are on top of the fire, fighting it, the better results you have.

When we get a phone call, we go dump water on the fire.

Flames were over the cockpit of the airplane. I was flying at night.

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3 thoughts on “More air tankers becoming available in Kansas”

  1. I wonder what DOI and the rest of the SEAT community thinks of this. I’m all for having more air resources but is there any formal training that these pilots are getting?

  2. Neither aircraft nor pilots carded, no fire gates, and not fire pilots or fire trained. Kansas is using ag pilots and working spray aircraft to drop water on an ad hoc basis. The hoppers will be fresh from carrying pesticide.

    1. I’ve always stood back in amazement at the ag pilots and their air tractors. (Fire pilots too!) Seems like using them on fire would be good for all concerned.

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