Keeping the squadron of helicopters that make up the Santa Barbara County Air Support Unit (ASU) airborne during a vegetation fire or any extended incident requires the use of a helitender. The unit is based at the Santa Ynez Airport near Station 32.
The Huey helicopters have a fuel tank of 190 gallons. The mobile helitender holds 1,200 gallons of Jet A fuel and can be driven to the incident’s temporary base to help maximize the flying time over the scene.
It also holds various equipment, tools and an extra water dropping fire bucket which can be attached to a helicopter.