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Republic of Cyprus takes delivery of AT-802F

Air Tractor’s AT-802F single engine air tanker is gaining popularity among firefighting services in Mediterranean and Balkan countries that have battled waves of disastrous wildfires in recent years.

Hugo Arceo, Sales Manager of Air Tractor Europe, reports the Republic of Cyprus took delivery of its first AT-802F single engine air tanker in October 2009. One of the latest European Union countries to join the AT-802 fire-fighting club is Republic of Cyprus.
The delivery of one land-based AT-802 (registered FD-1, ex N41692, c/n AT802-0335) two-seater to the Cypriot Department of Forest, an institution that is part of the Cypriot Ministry of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment, took place in October 2009 and was in line with the Contract signed with Spanish company “Air Tractor Europe S.L.” in February 2009 after public tender process has been successfully completed during 2008.
The aircraft is already operational with the Cypriot Department of Forestry for firefighting and spraying operations. The aircraft is based at Nicosia International Airport, about 20 kilometers from the north coast of Cyprus. Larnaca International Airport, on the southeast coast of Cyprus, is its alternate FOB.
“We are very proud of being able to sell additional planes inside the European union which will be used for fires in Cyprus and neighbor countries and for agricultural purposes,” notes Arceo.
In addition to the Republic of Cyprus, the coastal countries of Montenegro and Macedonia on the Adriatic Sea also purchased AT-802F “Fire Boss” amphibious firefighting aircraft during 2009.
Each country took delivery of two aircraft – Montenegro in June 2009 and Macedonia in November 2009. A third AT-802F Fire Boss is scheduled for delivery to each country in early 2010.
The Cyprus AT-802F Fire Boss purchase follows a Croatian government decision to expand its aerial firefighting capabilities by supplementing its single land-based AT-802F with acquisition of four Fire Boss amphibious aircraft and one land-based 802AF during 2008.
As a result, the 855 Firefighting Squadron, a dedicated Croatian Air Force aerial firefighting unit, now operates a fleet of six AT-802Fs from Zadar-Zamunik Air Force Base. In addition to these Balkan operations, the governments of Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Serbia, and Greece have also expressed interest in purchasing AT-802F aircraft. This article was compiled with the help of Air Tractor, USA and Igor Bozinovski.

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