ODF helicopters ready to fight flames

A helicopter ready from O.D.F.'s Central Point location's landing pad. (Sammy Shaktah/ News 10)

The Oregon Department of Forestry now has two helicopters in Central Point, and they're ready for action as the region faces dry weather.

This is part of a 75-day contract which allows these helicopters to be used when they may be needed most, especially during the summer. During the dry months, fires can commonly be caused by lightning storms. These lightning storms can cause fires in remote locations which can then spread quickly. That's where the helicopters play one of their important roles, getting the firefighters there quicker than a drive to the location.

"That can greatly help when they are in remote areas because often when we're bringing our trucks in sometimes we have to make a road to get to the fire so that can cause a delay and it can help the fire spread with that extra time that it has, before we get there, so having that capability is very helpful," Natalie Weber of the Oregon Department of Forestry said.

She also mentioned that the department is celebrating one hundred years of aviation this year.

Together with the use of helicopters while having boots on the ground, fires can be combated more effectively.

They provide an eye in the sky, quick transportation to the scene, and are able to drop water on the flames from the sky.

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