MAFFS drops continue in Cheyenne
By Maj. Kimberly Holman, 146AW
/ Published July 07, 2012
CHEYENNE, Wyo. -- Firefighting support to the U.S. Forest Service is now based out of Cheyenne, Wyo. for the 27 members of the146th Airlift Wing (AW) who were activated one week ago, June 30, 2012. C130s equipped with MAFFS (Modular Airborne Firefighting Systems) arrived from around the country in response to requests from the Forest Service.
"Weather has played a big role in our ability to fly here'" said Lt. Col. Scotty Pemberton, MAFFS pilot with the 146th AW. "We get afternoon thunderstorms but have been able to get in drops in the mornings, and whenever the weather clears. The crews are all standing by ready to go as soon as the Forest Service hands us the launch order."
Six aircraft are presently battling wildfires in the Rocky Mountain region: two from the 146th AW based in Port Hueneme, Calif., two from the 153rd AW in Cheyenne, Wyo. and two from the 302nd Air Force Reserve Command who are staging from their home station at Peterson Air Force Base, in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Much of the support to U.S. Forest Service is being conducted near Cheyenne, Wyo., primarily working near the Arapajo and Squirrel Creek fires to the north and west of Cheyenne.
The 146th to date has performed 32 drops and dropped 84,660 gallons of retardant since the activation began.