CAL FIRE employees load retardant into the MAFFS system of an Air National Guard C-130, designated "MAFFS 8 out of Reno, Nev." July 13, 2021, from CAL FIRE Air Tanker Base, McClellan Park, Calif. The Air Force C-130 MAFFS-equipped aircraft, as requested by the National Interagency Fire Center and approved by the Secretary of Defense, are providing unique fire-fighting capabilities. Modular Airborne Fire Fighting Systems (MAFFS) are the U.S. Forest Service’s portable fire-retardant delivery systems can be inserted into military C-130 aircraft without major structural modifications to convert them into air tankers when needed. They can discharge their entire load of up to 3,000 gallons of retardant in less than five seconds, covering an area one-quarter of a mile long by 100 feet wide, or make variable drops. Once the load is discharged, and the aircraft land at the tanker base, it can be refilled in less than 12 minutes.
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