The forward operations fire-fighting airstrip at Turkey Lane on Kangaroo Island will get new water tanks thanks to the Masonic Charities Trust.

Masonic Charities has announced a $600,000 gift to the South Australian Country Fire Service (CFS) in an initiative dubbed Freemasonry Fire-Proofing South Australia.

The gift is set to be distributed over a three-year period and will give the CFS the resources needed to address critical fire prevention and response services.

Through the collaboration, the CFS will strategically place Masonic-branded fire water tanks across South Australia in areas controlled by the CFS and identified as being high-risk due to their lack of available water sources.

Kangaroo Island CFS Region 1 is investigating option of a lease from SA Water adjacent to Water Filtration Plant and Turkey Lane Airstrip for the tanks.

The construction, subject to building approvals and government procurement requirements, is expected to be progressing by early in 2021.

A spokesman for the CFS said the issue of refueling aircraft on KI was not a major concern.

The smaller air tractor fire bombers operated by AeroTech can be refueled at Turkey Lane, while larger aircraft such as the Erikson Air Crane helicopter would need to come back to the mainland anyway because of the volumes involved.

The CFS confirmed that the lease of the airstrip for aerial firefighting operations was undertaken directly by AeroTech and the landowner.

Read more on this story at the Islander Online