No. 106 dt. 26 September, 2006.
On June 7, 2006 Beriev Aircraft Company concluded an agreement with Portuguese National Service for Civil Defense and Fire Protection of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Portugal on rendering fire-fighting services in Portugal by Be-200ES aircraft during its experimental flights.
The agreement was signed by the Vice-President of Portuguese National Service for Civil Defense and Fire Protection Jose Paulo Magalhaes Gamito Carrilho and Director General of Beriev Aircraft Company Victor A. Kobzev.
This year, within the period from July, 1 till August, 31, Be-200ES amphibious aircraft (RF 21512) made fire-fighting flights in Portugal.
The goal of these flights was experimental operation and provision of the Portuguese party with the required flight and operational data on Be-200ES aircraft.
Bå-200ES aircraft (RF-21512) was deployed at the airfield of Monte-Real. All the flights were performed by day at the territory of continental Portugal by Beriev flight crews with the participation of representatives of Portuguese MAI, who were responsible for the coordination of the activities with ground fire brigades and assessed the aircraft performance.
Depending on an actual situation and according to the decision taken by authority of the Fire Protection Department, Bå-200ES aircraft performed one thru four mission flights per day. Due to a complicated fire-hazardous situation, the aircraft made up to four mission flights a day during several days in July and August. The maximum flying time per shift was 10 hours 30 minutes. The maximum efficiency demonstrated in Portugal amounts to 60.5 tons of water dropped per hour, provided that the water area suitable for scooping was at the distance of 15 km from the fire spot. Nevertheless, the absolute record set up by Be-200 aircraft is the efficiency of its operation in Italy in 2005, which is characterized by 222.5 tons per hour.
During its fire-fighting flights in Portugal Be-200ES amphibious aircraft displayed high effectiveness of its application in mountainous areas and high temperature conditions due to its excellent maneuverability and high thrust-to-weight ratio. This was confirmed by the ground services involved in the fire-fighting activities.
Upon the completion of the obligations under the agreement by August, 13, a new service agreement was concluded on August, 14 as a result of the performed experimental flights and due to a complicated fire-hazardous situation in the country worsened by the failure of other fire-fighting aerial means. As a part of the agreement, which was initiated by the Portuguese government, Bå-200ES amphibious aircraft was at alert and performed mission flights when required to suppress forest fires in Portugal up to August, 31.
In total 42 flights were performed during the whole period of the aircraft operation in Portugal, with the total flying time of 119 hours; the aircraft performed 301 water scooping operations and dropped 2389 tons of water on fire areas.
Bå-200ES aircraft completely fits the infrastructure of airports and air bases available in Europe, the pre-flight preparation and post-flight maintenance system both in the event of its ferry flights on international routes and mission flights.
The experience of Be-200ES amphibious aircraft fire-fighting operation in Portugal in 2006 (especially extinguishing of vast areas of fire), leads to a conclusion that Be-200ES aircraft in combination with other ground and aerial means is capable of solving fire-fighting problem in Portugal.
Beriev team, who worked on fire extinguishing
in Portugal in cooperation with representatives
of Ministry of Internal Affairs of Portugal
In conditions of high temperature and strong wind the fire spread quickly
Often the fire approached population centers
Be-200ES aircraft made a restrictive frame
and suppressed separate fire spots by multi-ton water drops
Visit of Minister of Internal Affairs of Portugal to Be-200ES deployment area.
Press-conference for Portuguese and foreign journalists.
Presentation made by Director General of Beriev Aircraft Company for official establishment
Minister, his Deputies and President of Portuguese National Service for Emergency Situations
and Fire Protection paid a visit to Be-200ES aircraft
Upon the completion of flights, on the eve of departure,
delegation of heads of fire-protection departments from
all districts of Portugal visited the aircraft
The people, who enabled the daily operation of Be-200 aircraft as a fire-fighter,
highly evaluated the efficiency of the aircraft application