HomeNewsLarge Air Tanker's Canadian crew 'raring to go'

Large Air Tanker’s Canadian crew ‘raring to go’

LAT large air tanker
The Large Air Tanker (LAT) demonstrates its aerial firefighting capability. Photo: Kate Barrington

Canadian crew members of the Large Air Tanker (LAT) stationed at Bundaberg Regional Airport have completed quarantine and are ready to face Queensland’s bushfire season.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk was in town to make the announcement which comes as the state’s bushfire risk intensifies.

“We have this LAT here especially for the next three months of our bushfire season,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“We have got an increased fire danger over the next couple of days because of the dry and windy conditions, so everyone please be on alert.

“But to have the LAT here for Queensland based in Bundaberg to address any issues in regional Queensland is, of course, excellent.

“Our pilots from Canada have done their quarantine and they are raring to go.”

The LAT will be based in Bundaberg for Queensland’s next four bushfire seasons and will be sent to Victoria for its fire season, which coincides with Queensland’s wet season.

Minister for Fire and Emergency Services Mark Ryan said the LAT was an excellent asset for Queensland leading into bushfire season.

“It’s great to have this resource though based here in Bundaberg because it allows us, in our peak bushfire period, to be able to respond quickly and decisively to bushfire threat,” Mr Ryan said.

“In true Aussie spirit, it’s also available for other states who may require this amazing aerial firefighting capability.”

He said the aerial firefighters, who hailed from Canada, were “some of the world’s best”.

Mayor Jack Dempsey, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Member for Bundaberg Tom Smith at the Bundaberg Regional Airport to watch a demonstration of the LAT in action ahead of bushfire season

Mayor Jack Dempsey, who is also chair of the Local Disaster Management Group, said it was excellent to see the LAT back in action and protecting lives and property during bushfire season.

“It is just inspirational to be able to come and see the type of equipment the state has in place protecting Queenslanders,” Mayor Dempsey said.

“Now that we’ve got the support from the air and the expertise on the ground it means that we can respond and get on top of disasters in a more timely way.”

The LAT features impressive fire suppression and containment capabilities with a 10,000 litre retardant capacity.



  1. the use of helicopter firefighting team has been greatly appreciated in mt perry in the last 2 days . they were very efficient and has given us great confidence for the coming fire season . the area is covered with tons of dry bush and grass due to the current drought . only problem now is water supply .i have 3 dams all dry . the draining of paradise dam is a disaster. heads should fall because of it ‘

  2. Mr burges if the government wont let them use sea water as it ruins the landscape where the hell is this thing going to fill up with 10,000 litres when like you say theres a dam supply shortage

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