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Russian amphibious aircraft stop wildfires from developing to Haifa

November 27, 2016, 10:17 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Within one day, the emergency ministry’s aircraft 14 times dropped water - the total weight of almost 170 tonnes

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MOSCOW, November 27. /TASS/. Be-200 amphibious aircraft of the Russian emergencies ministry have protected Haifa from new wildfires, the ministry’s press service told TASS on Sunday.

"For one day, Be-200 have been extinguishing wildfires near Haifa and Jerusalem," the press service said. "In the joint effort with the Israeli ground fire grouping, they managed protecting Haiva, which has suffered wildfires already."

Within one day, the emergency ministry’s aircraft 14 times dropped water - the total weight of almost 170 tonnes.

The aircraft use the Hatzor Airbase. "They pick water from the Mediterranean Sea in hydroplaning, which requires from the crews top concentration, and in fact pinpoint accuracy," the emergencies ministry said. "As the aircraft fill the tanks with water right from the water surface, they require less time to get back to the fire area."

Be-200 arrived in Israel, seized by wildfires, on November 25, as ordered by President Vladimir Putin, and joined the international aviation grouping there to tackle the fire.

The Beriev Be-200 multipurpose airplane, known as one of the world’s most effective aircraft for firefighting, has a capacity of 12 tons of water and is capable of suppressing large-scale wildfires by conducting multiple water drops on a fire site.

Russian planes took part in extinguishing forest fires at home and abroad, including in Serbia, Greece, Montenegro and Portugal.

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