WINNIPEG — The Manitoba government is spending $1.6 million to upgrade its water bomber fleet.
Natural Resources and Northern Development Minister Scott Fielding announced Wednesday the funding will support several upgrades to the province’s specialized aircraft.
“Investing in our provincial water bomber fleet is essential as it plays an important role in our government’s climate resiliency strategy,” said Fielding.
“Strategic investments in the prevention and suppression of wildfires will help ensure the ability to prepare and respond in managing wildfire risks to protect Manitobans, forestry and provincial natural resources.”
Upgrades include the installation of new radios in three of the CL-215 aircraft to ensure compatibility with the province’s new public safety communications network, water door warning systems and corrosion protection on four CL-415 water bombers, and building two 12-person bunkhouses at Wekusko Falls’ initial attack base to support northern wildfire operations.
The upgrades are being implemented by Babcock Canada Inc., which operates and maintains Manitoba’s fleet of seven CL-415 and CL-215 water bombers.