$2.36 mil­lion chop­per bought to fight fires

Austin American-Statesman - - COMMUNITY NEWS - — FARZAD MASHHOOD, AMER­I­CAN-STATES­MAN STAFF

County Com­mis­sion­ers on Tues­day unan­i­mously ap­proved buy­ing a $2.36 mil­lion fire­fight­ing heli­copter with more water-car­ry­ing ca­pac­ity than the three chop­pers the county al­ready owns.

The air­craft will be op­er­ated by Star Flight and will be used pri­mar­ily for fire­fight­ing. Star Flight’s three other he­li­copters con­duct dif­fer­ent types of mis­sions, in­clud­ing med­i­cal trans­port, search and res­cue, fire­fight­ing and as­sist­ing po­lice.

Star Flight man­ager Casey Ping said the new craft would be up and run­ning by April 1.

The three cur­rent he­li­copters each have a 130-gal­lon water bucket; the new one would have a 323-gal­lon ca­pac­ity, ac­cord­ing to seller North­west He­li­copters, LLC.

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