Supertanker in Australia


#1

The supertanker is a 747 used to fight fires. However has it ever been used to combat the bush-fires that commonly occur in Australia? And where would it be based? I know the DC-10 was used in 2009 at Avalon.


#2

Only one supertanker 747 was ever built, and it has since been returned to cargo service after they could not find a market for it. The only other large body aircraft being used for fire fighting are 2 or 3 DC-10s.


#3

There were 2 supertankers built, N470EV and N479EV.

470 was converted back to cargo, 479 came to GPT during the oil spill but was never used.

Wiki says it is based near Scaramento (MCC) and under contract with Cal Fire and

don’t think it has ever been to Australia.


#4

I don’t think CalFire ever used the Supertanker. The biggest VLAT (Very Large Air Tanker) they have used is the DC-10. (Tanker 910) The US Forest Service may have contracted with Evergreen for a few years for the 747.

The virtue of a VLAT is when it is used in heavier fuels (timber). The lighter fuels prevalent in CalFire’s turf makes the big guys not as useful as the S-2T’s which have shorter travel distances and are more able to get into tighter spots than the VLAT’s.