Canadair: over the summer, our water bombers are a frequent sight

In Corsica, we have a certain number of water bombers that look after us, doing their utmost to secure the population and territory – and always at the risk of their own lives; for this remains a very dangerous ordeal – regardless of the length of time of exercise carried out by experienced pilots.
Regularly called upon, they travel the island relentlessly and intervene as quickly as possible.

Fires can be extremely destructive on this island, and how precautions and foresight are absolutely necessary on a constant basis. However, given the efforts and means employed, we still undergo regular settings on fire. It must be understood, the slightest spark is fatal during the summer months. The risk factor springs from several sides; criminal (thus, deliberately), negligence, solid heat/dryness, accidental and also ‘undefined’.


Water bombers were built in Montreal Quebec, and the name Canadair has remained from the company that produced them. Amphibian, possessing the capability of taking off from both water and land, with almost 20m in length and around 29m of wingspan .. quite a sight. I remember the first time I observed one, I wondered how he managed to remain up in the air, as they do give the impression of carrying a certain ‘weight’. As for the intake of water – 6,000 litres in both tanks, in just over 12 seconds … from sea, lake, dam or river. (The canadair has two tanks, which allows him to make several water drops on multiple sites, while other water bombers can only perform a single drop). These bombardiers are daily sights here, (version CL 415 turbo-powered) and it is not unusual whilst lying on the beach to observe their arrival before they scoop down skimming the water offshore, and it’s interesting to notice that usually one hears them first, before the impressive sight actually appears – another detail that highly impressed me, needless to say. And even now, after all these years I cannot but help feel a sentiment of admiration each time, for these flying devices.

Respect and gratitude always, for I repeat, the menace is constant – resulting in devastation and irremediable damage and shattered emotions.



Detail source: Wikipedia
Image: Yannick B Corsica Meia

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