Bombardier Aerospace announced today that the Italian government has exercised an option to purchase 15 additional upgrade kits to enhance its entire fleet of Bombardier 415 aircraft. Italy had previously ordered one kit for installation on the Bombardier 415 firefighter it purchased in 2005.
The upgrade kit package is derived from the Bombardier 415MP multipurpose aircraft and includes autopilot, nose radar, flight data recorder (FDR) and cockpit voice recorder (CVR). The kit is now being offered as an upgrade to the Bombardier 415 aircraft to enhance its operational capabilities while improving crew comfort and safety.
“On many occasions, Italy’s Bombardier 415 aircraft have been called upon to support firefighting efforts in neighboring countries, as well as to participate in humanitarian relief operations worldwide,” said Michel Bourgeois, President, Bombardier Amphibious Aircraft. “We are very pleased that the Italian Civil Protection authorities have chosen to upgrade their entire fleet with our equipment, to provide better assistance to the pilots.”
“We purchased these upgrade kits so that we could enhance crew safety and improve the performances of the interventions on the fire as well as aircraft capabilities to match the increasingly varied and demanding missions in which our Bombardier 415 operate,” said Dr. Vincenzo Spaziante, Vice Director of Civil Protection of Italy. “The 2005 fire fighting season was one of the most successful, thanks in large part to our fleet of Bombardier 415 and I am pleased to have the improved Bombardier 415 in our inventory.”
Since the first delivery in 1994, Bombardier Aerospace has sold 63 Bombardier 415 aircraft, which have been delivered to firefighting agencies in Croatia, France, Greece, Italy, Ontario and Québec.
In the Mediterranean region, France, Croatia, Italy and Greece currently operate 41 Bombardier 415 aircraft and Spain operates 14 CL-215T turboprop aircraft. Also 27 CL-215 piston aircraft are in service fighting fires in Europe.
The Bombardier 415 aircraft has a maximum speed of 375 km/h (235 mph) and in an average mission of 11 kilometres (six nautical miles) distance from water to fire, it can complete nine drops within an hour, delivering 55,260 litres (14,600 U.S. gallons) of fire suppressant. It is also offered in a multi-purpose version (Bombardier 415MP) for search and rescue, maritime patrol and environmental protection.
A world-leading manufacturer of innovative transportation solutions, from regional aircraft and business jets to rail transportation equipment, Bombardier Inc. is a global corporation headquartered in Canada. Its revenues for the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2005, were $15.8 billion US and its shares are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (BBD). News and information are available at www.bombardier.com.
Bombardier, 415 and CL-215, CL-215T are trademarks of Bombardier Inc. or its subsidiaries.