US Forest to add large firefighting planes

May 06, 2013

Forest officials are expanding their fleet of tankers to help fight wildfires. The U.S. Forest Service announced Monday it will add seven planes that can fly faster and drop more fire retardant than its current fleet. 

Right now, eight large air tankers are used to aid in fighting wildfires. They are mostly submarine chasers from the Korean War era.

The Forest Service says nearly $160 million in contracts are available for several types of news planes, including a DC-10, a much larger plane than has been regularly used before.

The agency’s fleet of large tankers has dropped significantly from 46 planes, due in part to several fatal crashes.

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