FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
July 7, 2017
CONTACT: Colorado National Guard Public Affairs, Maj. Darin Overstreet, firstname.lastname@example.org, 720-250-1053
CENTENNIAL, Colo. – The Colorado National Guard continues to assist civil authorities with aerial firefighting and adds casualty evacuation capabilities for the Peak 2 fire in Summit County, near Breckenridge.
One of the UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters transitions today from aerial firefighting to serve as a standby casualty evacuation aircraft equipped with a hoist and will be available for immediate employment.
Continuing to support aerial firefighting operations is one UH-60 Black Hawk and two CH-47 Chinook helicopters from the Colorado Army National Guard, to be employed at the discretion of the incident commander. The helicopters are equipped with an aerial water bucket, able to carry and deliver up to 500 (Black Hawk) or 2,000 (Chinook) gallons of water, or fire retardant slurry, at one time.
"We have neighbors throughout the state facing the impacts of wildfires," said the director of Joint Staff, Col. Gregory White, who commands the military response to domestic operations. "These missions are high-risk and stressful, but using military training to help our neighbors is the most rewarding thing we do."
Aircraft supporting the missions are from the CW5 David R. Carter Army Aviation Support Facility based at Buckley Air Force Base, Aurora. The crews are members of 2nd Battalion, 135th General Support Aviation.
For more information about fire operations, contact the Summit County Sheriff Public Information Officer.
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Photo collection of aerial firefighting operations: https://www.flickr.com/photos/conationalguard/collections/72157679890010760/
UH-60 Black Hawk
Aerial water bucket system