Wyoming’s Modular Airborne Fire Fighting Systems unit deploying to western states this week

MAFFS will ship out to help combat wildfire in neighboring states
Published: Sep. 14, 2022 at 7:32 PM CDT
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CHEYENNE, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - After months of preparation and training the Wyoming Air Guard’s Modular Airborne Fire Fighting Systems or MAFFS unit has been called out to help fight wildfires in the western states.

There are already two national MAFFS units from California and Nevada in Idaho working on wildfires in the northwest.

The Wyoming MAFFS unit will be helping to relieve both crews, and they are one of four in the country that do this mission.

”This is everything we practice for. Doing this real-world mission, to make sure that these planes are equipped are safe to fly for this MAFFS mission,” said Senior Airman, Dante Duran, Crew Chief for the C-130.

These service members are prepping to leave on Friday.

”We’re extremely proud, of this mission and our ability to do it. It’s a pretty elite mission, it’s one of the most dangerous missions that we do. But we are the most proud of it because this is a direct impact on United States citizens. We get to help our neighbors, our friends, our fellow states, and our country,” said Lt. Col. Jon Holland, 187th Airlift Squadron Commander.

A crew of 15 with gear and a Mission Commander will hit fires in Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Northern California, and Northern Nevada.

”We’ll be working whichever fires the National Inter-Agency Fire Center determines needs the most help,” said Holland.

Each C-130 fire pass drops 3,000 gallons of fire retardant on these wildfires. Making anywhere from 9 to 16 drops a day, depending on the fire severity.

”It really makes you proud to be in this job because you see the videos of the lines that we drop right in front of people’s houses you know right in from of people’s property and you see the fire stop right there and it’s a great experience,” said Duran.

The Wyoming C-130s are helping to keep citizens safe as part of their call of duty and will be in Idaho into next month.