< Reveal sidebar

Global SuperTanker’s Spirit of John Muir Goes to Israel to Assist With Firefighting Efforts

The 747-400 Supertanker practices over mountains (Photo: Global Super Tanker)

Spirit of John Muir, the supertanker Boeing 747-400, has safely landed in Tel Aviv; its goal is to help with firefighting efforts after an urgent call from the country for assistance. Even with aircraft from neighboring countries gradually suppressing the flames, the fires continue to rage relentlessly.

Flames swept across Haifa, Israel’s third-largest city, forcing tens of thousands from their homes. Even though the fire inside the city is now under control, a dozen other fires in the country are still burning.

The airplane departed on Thanksgiving evening from Colorado Springs and landed in Tel Aviv after a 12 hour non-stop flight. The airplane is the largest firefighting aircraft in the world, capable of dumping nearly 20.000 gallons of water, foam or retardant for up to 4,000 miles. Not only can it be used to fight wildfires, it can also be sent out to aid in emergencies such as fires on drill rigs, for example.

The 747-400 received final approval from the FAA this September. Unfortunately, in order to fight fires in the United States, it has to be contracted by the U.S. Forest Service. Currently, the Forest Service has contracts with other companies.

Global SuperTanker CEO Jim Wheeler expressed his feelings about the situation in the U.S. saying,“It’s like watching somebody’s house burn and knowing that you can’t go in and rescue them.” Fortunately, after an international call for help from Israel, the airplane gets to do its job after all.

The company is also getting ready for the Australian fire season, where it is hoping to take the aircraft down to aid those in need.  In June, the crew underwent some extensive mountain training flights to help prepare them for difficult terrain.

AirlineGeeks.com Staff


  • AirlineGeeks.com Staff

    AirlineGeeks.com was founded in February 2013 as a one-person blog in Washington D.C. Since then, we’ve grown to have 25+ active team members scattered across the globe. We are all here for the same reason: we love deep-diving into the fascinating realm of the airline industry.

    View all posts

Subscribe to AirlineGeeks' Daily Check-In

Receive a daily dose of the airline industry's top stories along with market insights right in your inbox.

Related Stories

‘Dutch Roll’ Incident Prompts FAA/NTSB Investigation

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) are investigating yet another alarming incident in which a…

Emirates Takes Off with Sustainable Aviation Fuel in Singapore

Emirates has begun using sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) in its operations at Singapore Changi Airport, marking a significant step towards…

Air Canada Bids Farewell to Last CRJ-200

Air Canada has officially retired the last CRJ-200 aircraft from its regional fleet. The final flight of the type, registered…