The Australian Department of Defence has secured an approval from the federal government to acquire 28 replacement aviation fire trucks for the Australian Defence Force's (ADF) Titan aircraft rescue and fire fighting (ARFF) vehicle fleet.
Acquired under the LAND 998 phase 1 replacement fire trucks project, the trucks are expected to be capable of aircraft crash rescue and emergency response, as well as fire fighting support in domestic and deployed environments.
The cost of the acquisition, along with associated training and facilities to support the vehicles, is estimated to be more than $60m.
Australian defence minister David Johnston said: "They will operate alongside the current fleet of Panther fire trucks, which are designed for Australian fixed air bases, while the new smaller vehicles will both complement this capability and provide defence with a deployable fire fighting response.
"These new trucks can be deployed by C-130J Hercules aircraft, are highly mobile and can be used at deployed airfields and aircraft crash sites in hostile environments."
Expected to enter service between 2016 and 2018, the LAND 998 fleet will provide ARFF support for the army aviation at fixed bases within Australia, support expeditionary operations and supplement the Royal Australian Air Force's (RAAF) capability, acquired under the JP 2095 project.
Johnston added: "The project will develop an in-country support system that will maximise the amount of Australian industry involvement.
"The proposed support model includes developing a spares warehouse and maintenance facilities, and [the] employment of mobile mechanics for repair and diagnostics."
The project is expected to provide an opportunity for the involvement of Australian industry for integrated logistic support and the ongoing sustainment of the fleet in local vehicle locations.
Built by E-One, Titan is a four-wheel-drive vehicle used by the Australian Army and RAAF for aircraft rescue fire fighting and structural rescue fire fighting in a deployed environment.