|A CH-147F Chinook helicopter from 450 Tactical Helicopter Squadron at 4th Canadian Division Support Base lands at Leismer Aerodrome in Conklin, Alberta, on May 6, 2016, as part of Canadian Armed Forces support to the Province of Alberta's emergency response to wildfires in Fort McMurray.|
It is the first time that the CAF is operating a CH-147F Chinook helicopter on a domestic humanitarian operation. The aircraft, from 450 Tactical Helicopter Squadron at 4th Canadian Division Support Base Petawawa, joins four CH-146 Griffon helicopters and one CC-130J Hercules aircraft currently supporting relief efforts in the province.
The CH-147F Chinook is an advanced, multi-mission, medium to heavy-lift helicopter. Its primary mission is the tactical transport of equipment and personnel during domestic or deployed operations. The versatility, impressive capacity and extended range of the Chinook make it ideal for operations in Canada’s vast territory and demanding environment.
“It brings me great pride to be a part of the first ever employment of the CH-147F Chinook in Canadian domestic humanitarian operations," said Lieutenant-Colonel Kevin Kimpinski, Air Task Force Commander – Joint Task Force West. "The helicopter’s role is just another example of how Joint Task Force West is ready and able to help fellow Albertans affected by the wildfires.”
The CH-147F Chinook is part of Joint Task Force West’s Air Task Force - Forward, which is working to evacuate people, transport emergency response personnel, conduct search and rescue missions, deliver emergency supplies, and fly reconnaissance and night surveillance missions.
The CH-147F Chinook is deployed under Operation LENTUS, the CAF’s contingency plan that outlines the joint response to provide support to provincial and territorial authorities in cases of major natural disasters.