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Coulson Aircrane is off to an excellent start. At the beginning of April we were awarded two significant aviation contracts from the Unites States Forest Service.
The first is the long expected contract for the Martin Mars. Our crews with the Mars have been outstanding the last two fire seasons and the contract is recognition from our customer that we are able to operate this aircraft in a remote location and be as serviceable as competing aircraft.
We will be stationed in Southern California at Lake Elsinore protecting the three surrounding Forests of Angeles, San Bernadino and the Cleveland.
Our contract starts on June 15th and finishes Nov 15th. This is a one year contract with two, one year renewals.
Achieving this milestone has been no easy task and I would like to thank Jim Messer, Britt Coulson and Susan Merivirta who have worked on this project since day one.
We have added a new aircraft to this program to lead the Mars as a birddog which is a Sikorsky S-76 B. This aircraft will be outfitted with thermal imaging capability that allows us to film every drop and send images from the S-76 to the area command centres, incident commanders and fire forecasting mappers.
We will be the most advanced equipped support aircraft in the firefighting industry and will feature a follow-up story once the S-76 has been refitted with the new camera and accessories.
The second contract awarded was for one of the S-61s that has been working in Australia. Its mission will also be in Southern California at Santa Ynes. We have partnered with ERA out of the Gulf of Mexico on this contract and start operations around June 15th. The mission profile for the S-61 will be carrying firefighters that will rappel from the aircraft which is similar to our Australian operations.
There has been some clarity with our harvesting operations and we will be heading back to Stewardson this month.
The lumber markets are slowly stabilizing so we continue to be cautiously optimistic for the second quarter.