De Havilland Canada launches firefighter aircraft
Monica FergusonGeneral Aerospace Manufacturing aircraft Canada firefighter manufacturing program
De Havilland Aircraft Canada launched the DHC-515 Firefighter (formerly CL-515) program.
The DHC-515 Firefighter will be built on the history of the Canadair CL-215 and CL-415 aircraft. Upgrades are being made that will increase the functionality and effectiveness of this firefighting aircraft.
“After an extensive business and technical review, we are pleased to announce that we have launched the De Havilland DHC-515 Firefighter program, which will involve negotiating contracts with our European customers and ramping up for production,” said Brian Chafe, CEO, De Havilland Canada.
European customers have signed letters of intent to purchase the first 22 aircraft pending the positive outcome of government-to-government negotiations through the Government of Canada’s contracting agency, the Canadian Commercial Corporation. De Havilland Canada expects first deliveries of the DHC-515 by the middle of the decade, with deliveries of aircraft 23 and beyond to begin at the end of the decade.
The final assembly of the aircraft will take place in Calgary, Alberta where work on the CL-215 and CL- 415 aircraft currently takes place. It is anticipated that more than 500 people will need to be recruited over the coming years to successfully deliver this program.