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Specialist Course

Course Approval

Approved by Vantage Aviation Limited.


Government or parapublic organizations and individuals seeking career skills.


Qualified, current and experienced helicopter pilot (and crewman) with spare capacity. Holding an in date medical examination.
English spoken and written skills at least ICAO Level 4.


To enable the applicant to perform aerial fire fighting from a helicopter.


Typically two days


Typically up to five days


The course can be conducted in the UK or USA or using the client’s own aircraft.


On completion the students will be issued a certificate approved by Vantage Aviation.

Course Content

Helicopters are versatile fire management tools. They can be fitted with tanks or buckets to deliver water and fire retardant to the fireline. Large, heavy-lift helicopters can fill their water tanks with a snorkel that siphons water from lakes, rivers, or other sources. Smaller helicopters carry water in buckets that hold between 100-400 gallons of water. Each bucket has a release valve on the bottom controlled by the helicopter crew. When the helicopter is in position, the crew releases the water to extinguish hot spots.

For the helicopter to be a fully effective tool in fire suppression it is essential that pilots work closely with the individuals involved in management and use of helicopters. These people are primarily the helicopter manager and the crew, but may include any member of the firefighting team. A helicopter is a valuable and efficient fire fighting resource available to a fire service. To attain the highest efficiency, close cooperation must take place between the pilot and incident management personnel.

Helicopters also deliver firefighting crews sometimes called helitack crews to fires for initial attack. Some helitack crews are trained to rappel/abseil from helicopters to fires in remote locations (see our Abseil Course).



Commercial Pilots License

Commercial Pilots License

Private Pilots License

Private Pilots License

Course Enquiry

Course Enquiry