Neptune BAe 146 air tankers return home

Neptune Aviation BAe 146 Tanker 02

Neptune Aviation BAe 146 Tanker 02 (Neptune Aviation/Dennis White)

Neptune Aviation‘s BAe 146 air tankers have been gradually returning home to Missoula at the completion of an intensive and exhausting fire season Tankers 02 (msn E2045), 03 (msn E2192), 40 (msn E2049), and 41 (msn E2136) were released by the US Forest Service on October 27, and Tankers 10 (msn E2138) and 15 (msn E2103) followed two days later. This leaves only one Neptune 146 air tanker in the field: Tanker 12 (msn E2196), which is operating for CALFIRE. An additional tanker, N478NA (msn E2074), is nearing completion at Missoula, and has already been painted as Tanker 16. Neptune’s fleet now consists entirely of 146 air tankers, the company having officially retired its last two P2V air at the end of September — and then again in mid-October, after the P2Vs were briefly re-activated to help fight the devastating fires in northern California.

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