The Boeing 747 is an iconic aircraft, having flown over 3.5 billion people around the world and named the Queen of the Skies – it now has a new adventure.
In 2002 a company called Evergreen came up with the idea of converting four of its 747-200 aircraft to ‘Supertankers’, its maiden flight was February 2004. The plane fought fires around the world before Evergreen headed financial troubles and the plane was grounded in need of a million dollar ‘C Check’ and various other maintenance.
A new company called ‘Global SuperTankers’ bought ambitious plans to resurrect the 747 flying firetruck. They recruited engineers and staff from the now gone Evergreen and stripped all the guts from the old 747-200 and put them into the newer 747-400.
The new 747 can hold 19,600 gallons of retardant, that’s almost twice as much as the next largest aerial tanker. It can control the flow of water from a gentle rain to a high-pressure assault choosing to drop the retardant in 1 large load or 8 separate ones.
I think the forests can feel a lot safer knowing the 747-400 Supertanker will be in the air soon.