One of Canada’s primary search and rescue (SAR) aircrafts, the CC-115 Buffalo will fly in almost any weather. The agile Buffalo can take off and land on even the most rugged terrain and in areas as short as a soccer field.
The CC-130 Hercules now performs many of Eastern Canada’s SAR operations, but the short take-off and landing (STOL) capabilities of the CC-115 have kept it in use in the Rocky and Coastal Mountain ranges. At 24 m long, the Buffalo is small enough to service the rough and mountainous terrain on Canada’s West Coast.
All six Canadian Forces CC-115s are employed by 442 Transport and Rescue Squadron out of Comox, BC. The squadron is responsible for an SAR zone stretching from the BC–Washington border to the Arctic, and from the Rocky Mountains to 1200 km out over the Pacific Ocean. With a maximum load of 2727 kg—or 41 fully equipped soldiers—the Buffalo has an operational range of 2240 km.
Photo source: Canadian Department of National Defence