The specialized machinery fleet of the new Gagarin Airport in Saratov (member of the Airports of Regions Holding) received airfield fire vehicles and ground search and rescue team machine. The new special machinery based on KamAZ vehicles will constitute the backbone of the Search and Emergency Rescue Flight Support Service (SEFSS) that will be based on the emergency and rescue station in the immediate vicinity of the runway.
“Emergency and rescue support of flights is one of compulsory types of airport operations performed on the civil aviation aerodrome,” Executive Director of the Gagarin Airport Alexei Zhamkin says. “Arrived vehicles will provide the required fire protection level in the new Saratov airport when eliminating consequences of potential air accidents,” he added.
Note that airfield fire vehicles have a range of important differences from conventional ‘urban’ ones. They are characterized by higher cross-country mobility and carrying capacity, available foam generator and increased dimensions of the water tank, improved acceleration dynamics and the possibility of delivering fire extinguishing agents on the move. Purchased fire vehicles are fitted with advanced firefighting equipment, special firefighting and technical outfit to suppress fires on board of aircraft and perform emergency and rescue operations. Availability of a special device, a rake making possible to apply foam strips with width up to 8 meters on the runway, is an important structural feature of vehicles. Such measure can be applied to reduce the degree of aircraft structural damage and diminish the probability of jet fuel inflammation in case the aircraft makes belly landing.
A search and rescue vehicle has also become available with the Search and Emergency Rescue Service, intended to deliver specialists of the ground search and rescue team to the aviation accident area and carriage of special equipment and gear required to perform search and emergency rescue activities within or outside the airfield.
The vehicle fleet of the Search and Emergency Rescue Service will consist of five fire engines capable to arrive at any runway point during the time not above three minutes 24 hours a day. The level of required fire protection of the Gagarin Airport will correspond to the seventh category, contemplating permanent readiness of three crews of the firefighting and rescue team.