WILDFIRES

2 Killed After Small Air-Tankers Collide Fighting Nevada Wildfire

Jul 30, 2020, 9:08 PM | Updated: 9:34 pm
Bishop Fire as viewed from Ella Mountain Lookout. (Bureau of Land Management)...
Bishop Fire as viewed from Ella Mountain Lookout. (Bureau of Land Management)
(Bureau of Land Management)

CALIENTE, Nev. — Two people were killed after two single-engine air-tankers collided midair while fighting the Bishop Fire, which has burned 14,000 acres in southeastern Nevada.

Officials with the Bureau of Land Management confirmed Thursday’s crash and said both pilots involved had died.

“Recovery operations are currently underway and initial notifications are still being made, BLM officials said. “We offer our sincere condolences to the families of the two pilots and to all those working with the Bureau of Land Management – Nevada Ely District.”

Smoke from the fire is visible across southwestern Utah.

#NeverForgotten: A mid-air collision involving two U.S. Department of the Interior-contracted Single Engine Air Tankers,…

Posted by Bureau of Land Management Fire and Aviation on Thursday, July 30, 2020

The crash is under investigation.

Officials said single-engine air-tankers, or SEATs, can provide up to 800 gallons of fire retardant and operate in areas where larger air tankers cannot.

“Contract pilots play an important role in wildland firefighting efforts as the Bureau of Land Management protects the public, natural landscapes, wildlife habitat, recreational areas, and other values and resources.”

The human-caused Bishop Fire was reported Wednesday afternoon. Over 250 personnel have been assigned to the fire.

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2 Killed After Small Air-Tankers Collide Fighting Nevada Wildfire