Harriet Reece, Cavendish and Lewiston, and John Werner, Scarsdale, NY, are the winners!
Aerial wildfire fighting is the answer for Week 464 of Orofino History Trivia a special feature to celebrate the history and heritage of Clearwater Country.
Join in the discovery!
Monday: First tried in the 1920s
Tuesday: It broke apart before it reached its goal.
Wednesday: Making it useful took time.
Thursday: Different terrain calls for different tactics.
Friday: Success in this venture also takes skill.
Saturday: Equipment has become specialized.
Monday: A wooden beer keg was used early on.
Tuesday: It takes a combination of technology, personnel, and procedure for success.
Wednesday: It comes down from above.
Thursday: Is only part of the solution
Friday: Many have watched it as part of wildland fire fighting
Saturday: It takes careful coordination.
Anyone who has watched the aerial part of wildfire fighting could be fascinated by the coordination that it takes to get the water or retardant to the right place at the optimum time. It also takes coordination between those who are flying to make sure everyone stays safe.
Dropping water was first tried in the 1920s in this area. Unfortunately, the water which was dropped from a plane broke apart and never hit the fire. One of the original containers to hold the water was a wooden beer keg. Over the years, the equipment became more specialized and slurry retardant also entered the picture. Frequently, people will see helicopters with bags of water on lines dipping and dropping water in specific places to slow or put out part of the fire while fire fighters on the ground cut hand or dozer line to stop the fire. Other helicopters have the capability to snorkel water into tanks before they drop it on the fire. You also see single-engine-air-tankers (SEAT) planes dropping red retardant. Effectively using an air attack on a fire requires coordination of technology, personnel and procedures. The helicopters and airplanes involved are getting even more sophisticated as time goes on.
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