19 Aug 2022

VIDEO: Air Corps helicopter flies through thick smoke to quench wild fires in Kildare

Kildare Fire Service has released footage of the Air Corps bravely dropping thousands of litres of bog water onto a wild fire in north Kildare despite extremely low visibility due to thick smoke. 

It is estimated that up to 100 hectares of a Coillte forest may have been destroyed in the final days of May resulting in damage of up to €150,000.

Local firefighters from Maynooth, Naas and Leixlip were also assisted by Coillte officials and a Coillte-hired helicopter.

Kildare Fire Service thanked the communities of Hortland, Derryvarogue, Timahoe, Mucklawn and surrounding areas, who helped the firefighters in any way.

The Fire Service said the Air Corps utilised a 1,200 litre bambi bucket which can be attached to the bottom of their Augusta Westland AW139 helicopters to help extinguish fires from the air.

The Fire Service added: "It aids the firefighters on the ground as some areas are not accessible and it can extinguish a large area at a time.

"Each collection and drop was carried out in as little as 2 minutes meaning it can provide over 36,000 litre water drops an hour.

"Assistant Chief Fire Officer for Kildare Fire Service Ben Woodhouse travelled with the Air Corps to survey the site and collected some footage.

"Once again, we would like to thank the crews of the Irish Air Corps for their assistance throughout their time in North Kildare."


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