Thor thunders into NSW for bush fire season


Large Air Tanker (LAT) 'Thor' has arrived in Sydney ahead of the bushfire season, providing an immediate boost to the state's firefighting arsenal.

Minister for Emergency Services David Elliott, NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons and NSW RFS Deputy Commissioner Rob Rogers viewed a demonstration of the Hercules C130's water-bombing capabilities in Richmond today.

Thor can dump 15,000 litres of water or fire retardant at a time and will be used for direct attack on both bush and grass fires. A DC-10 Very Large Air Tanker (VLAT) will begin service on October 1.

"The NSW Government is delivering on a $9.8 million commitment to trial the use of a LAT and a VLAT for the first time during this bushfire season, providing valuable assistance to our firefighters," Mr Elliott said.

"The trial of this aircraft is an investment in protecting lives and property in NSW and an investment this Government has no hesitation in making."

Commissioner Fitzsimmons said Thor would be just one of the more than 100 tactical firefighting aircraft in use across the state this fire season.

"With warm and dry conditions predicted throughout the season, these aircraft are an important asset in our firefighting weaponry," Commissioner Fitzsimmons said.

"Importantly, it's their integration with the work of firefighters on the ground, along with a well prepared community, that makes the difference."

Community members can learn more about bushfire preparation at one of 600 events across the state on Get Ready weekend September 12/13.

Firefighters will be available at Brigade station open days and local Bunnings stores to provide advice on reducing the risk to your home.

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