The first of what could be seven MD-87 jet engine aircraft landed at the
The first of what may be several jets used for fire suppression landed at the Madras Airport last week after a Hillsboro-based air tanker company purchased the assets and assumed the leasing rights from a Redmond company to fight fires in Oregon.
Erickson Aero Tanker, a subsidiary of Hillsboro, Oregon-based Aero Air, LLC, could have seven or more retrofitted commercial McDonnell Douglas MD-87 jet planes at the city-owned airport by the end of March depending on whether the company can sign a federal contract to base and maintain the larger jets in the next few weeks, said Glen Newton, air tanker operations manager for the company in Madras.
Landing multiple federal contracts could help the company create up to 50 or 60 new jobs at the airport over the next several years,
“We wouldn’t make this kind of capital investment if we weren’t pretty sure,” said
“The sale is huge for
“The Erickson Aero Tanker group will take aerial fire fighting to the next level,” Brown said. “Once you get someone of the Erickson group’s caliber, you attract other related companies. They’ve been around for a long time and they are a highly regarded company.”
Erickson Aero Tanker made the agreement with Redmond-based Butler Aircraft, which will continue its fixed based operations at the