Learn about the aviation services managed by the ministry.
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We operate a modern fleet of fixed-wing and rotary aircraft, as well as a state-of-the-art flight simulator. Although forest fire suppression is one of our main services, the fleet also supports several specialty provincial resource management programs, such as fish and wildlife research and aerial rabies baiting. Our Aviation Services Centre coordinates and tracks all ministry flights, while Aviation Safety Officers ensure our commercial air carriers meet the required safety standards.
About our aircraft
Our ministry fleet of aircraft are maintained in hangars across the province.
Canadair CL–415 Waterbomber
The Canadair CL–415 Waterbomber is used exclusively for suppressing wildland fires, scooping water in 12 seconds with a tank capacity of 6,130 litres. Each of our nine waterbombers can spend hours on location.
DHC-2T Turbo Beaver
The DHC-2T Turbo Beaver can be configured with carries external loads, such as canoes or boats, to support operations in remote locations. Each of our five aircraft may also be equipped with radio telemetry antenna to track collars on wildlife including caribou, moose and wolves.
DHC-6 Twin Otter
The DHC-6 Twin Otter is equipped with tundra tires so it can land and take off from anywhere, making it useful for services where airports are not available. Each of our six aircraft can also be outfitted with water tanks to assist in wildland fire suppression and are also used to drop baits with a vaccine to manage rabies in wildlife (rabies baiting). Each plane can carry up to 16 passengers and transport up to eight drums of fuel to supply equipment in remote locations.
The fleet includes various helicopters, including several Eurocopters. Many of our aircraft can carry up to 7,000 pounds supporting slinging, surveying and water bucketing, and can also be outfitted with floats. They can also be operated with night vision technology.
Become a registered air operator in Ontario
If you are an air operator, apply to register on Ontario’s Eligibility List. Being on the list means you are eligible to be hired to provide services to the province.
Aviation Services Centre
Our mission is to provide specialized aviation services. We also provide or arrange non-scheduled air transportation for the Ontario government’s:
- schedule 1 agencies
We work directly with clients and commercial air carriers to coordinate flight operations across the province, and transport government employees conducting and facilitating provincial government services in Far North communities.
We work in conjunction with aviation safety officers to ensure proper safety procedures are in place for each flight.
We support emergency services with 24-hour operations to:
- respond to search and rescue Ontario Provincial Police requests and aircraft incidents
- coordinate evacuations of remote and Far North communities during fires and floods
The Aviation Services Centre also provides specialty flying operations such as rabies baiting, fish stocking, water bombing, aerial surveying and slinging.
Our CL-415 FFT X full flight training simulator is certified annually by Transport Canada and allows pilots to train in a safe and efficient platform. It is primarily used during the ministry CL-415 pilot training, approximately 280 hours every year. The simulator is also used by external clients such as Conair, Aeroflite, and other provincial governments for training purposes. The simulator currently has 3,500 hours logged since it began operation in 2013.