HELiFIRE Buckets


Wildfire Pilot Training


Helicopter Aerial Firefighting Course


Course Target Group


Pilots and Flight Crews involved in aerial fire suppression operations using HELiFIRE Monsoon Buckets.


Course Aim


To provide participants with the knowledge and proficiency on fire behaviour and basic aerial firefighting skills needed to safely and effectively suppress wildfires with an aircraft and monsoon bucket.




The programme is designed to be completed over three days, with pre and post course requirements, completion times will vary between individuals.



Course Objective


By the completion of the theory and practical components of the course, participant’s will be able to:


• Protect personal safety whilst working around Helicopters
• Demonstrate knowledge of the fire environment on wildfire behaviour
• Demonstrate knowledge of aerial suppression tactics at wildfires
• Load equipment, water and additives for aerial operations at wildfires
• Work with and operate a helicopter to suppress wildfires with a monsoon fire bucket
• Embark and disembark firefighters/equipment from the hover and toe-in


Blended Format


Training will be delivered exclusively by self-directed Learning, face to face training and ‘hands on’ practical external load flight skill exercises at your Helibase using you own helicopter. The training content includes the following modules:


Module One - Theory is delivered by distance learning, enabling flight and ground crew to undertake self-directed study (with instructor support) in their own time and at their own pace. Assessment for this phase is undertaken via a post course written assessment.



Module Two – This training is delivered on-site through one day of face to face ground school supported with instructor led presentations. Subjects covered include:


  • Personal Safety Around Helicopter
  • Wildfire Awareness (Fire Behaviour, Fuels and Topography)
  • Water and Additives for Aerial Wildfire Operations
  • Aerial Wildfire Suppression Tactics
  • Monsoon Bucket & Foam System operation
  • Loading and Unloading Helicopters


Module Three – This training comprises three consecutive days of practical external load flight skills training and assessment exercises using your Helicopter and a HELiFIRE monsoon bucket to drop water and water additives on simulated fires in the local training area.


Flight exercises include hooking up and filling monsoon buckets at the hover from a specified stationary and moving water source and delivery of the load to a separate location and firebombing passes and stationary drops at a specified position using a monsoon bucket. Flight exercise time depends on the individual pilot's external cargo background and industry experience.


Continuing Education


If required, we can also tailor this programme to incorporate the following elective unit standards, but this will require additional face to face and practical assessments.





This course is competency based and includes assessment to determine a participant’s competence against the selected learning objectives by “Question and Answers”, practical external load flight demonstrations using your helicopter to demonstrate the performance evidence and the submission of a number post course assignments to demonstrate evidence of knowledge.




Participants who successfully complete this course and are deemed competent against the assessment criteria, will be awarded a Wildfire Pilots Certificate, to validate that they have received structured fire control training in accordance with the National Rural Fire Authority’s Standard for use of aircraft at wildfires and Code of Practice for Aircraft Operations (Wildfire Fighting).


Brochure and Course Information


Download the Helicopter Aerial Firefighting Brochure and Course Information




For more information on how we can help train your personnel, please Click Here for an obligation free quote or CALL US NOW +64 6 856 6091