Victoria has gained approval to conduct night time firebombing operations next fire season after successfully completing a trial last month - in what was an Australian first.
The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) has approved Mangalore based Kestrel Aviation as well as Coulson Aviation to undertake night aerial fire suppression operations in Australia.
Both companies were part of a night fire suppression trial led by Emergency Management Victoria in Ballarat this summer.
Kestrel Aviation has also been part of the trial and gained CASA approval to operate night operations by refilling while landed on the ground.
They recently successfully completed night-time hover fills, concluding the Victorian trial, however this component is still to be assessed by CASA.
Read more in next week's Country News.