Airservices commissions new fire vehicles at Sydney Airport

16 May 2012

Today the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Anthony Albanese, commissioned four high visibility Mk8 (pronounced Mark 8) fire rescue vehicles for its aviation rescue and fire fighting (ARFF) operation at Sydney Airport, boosting aviation safety for the 36 million passengers who use the country’s busiest airport every year.

The Austrian-built Rosenbauer Mk8 ultra-large fire vehicles, valued at over $1 million each, are part of a $124 million investment by Airservices in the modernisation of fire and rescue services at the nation’s busiest airports through upgrading and replacing fire stations, equipment and vehicles. 

The Mk8s replace fire vehicles at Sydney that are up to 20 years old. As the largest fire fighting vehicle in Australia, the Mk8 weighs 30 tonnes when fully loaded with 10,000 litres of water and foam. Able to accelerate to 80 kilometres in under 30 seconds, the Mk8 enables fire fighters to respond to any incident at the airport within three minutes.

Equipped with a roof and front bumper monitors, the Mk8s can empty their tank in approximately two minutes, with the roof monitor capable of shooting water over 80 metres in distance.

Additionally, Airservices recently completed an upgrade of the fire station’s Fire Control Centre which involved replacing analogue communication systems with a standardised modern digital system. The upgrade incorporated the very latest technology, integrating communications and incident management resources.

Airservices provides aviation rescue and fire fighting (ARFF) services at 21 of Australia’s busiest airports. Over 740 highly trained and experienced fire fighting and technical personnel operate 113 high performance fire vehicles, specialised difficult terrain vehicles and specialised water rescue boats. 

On average, Airservices fire fighters at Sydney respond to in excess of 2000 call outs each year.