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We are dedicated to


“Our Safety Management System (SMS) is not a collection of boxes to be checked off,” explains CAS President Michael Hutchins.
“It is a culture change.”

Coastal Air Strike (CAS)
has never had an accident.

Never. Not one single accident. That has nothing to do with luck, and everything to do with our approach to this industry and our commitment to safety. Because of the industry’s inherent dangers, at CAS we live, eat, breathe, and think safety. Actually, we live, eat, and breathe BECAUSE we think safety. All of us. All of the time.

CAS regularly audits the SMS. “The audit is the foundation of what we’re doing on the safety side, it drives the train,” says Hutchins. “During the ‘off-season’ the CAS team rigorously trains to get ready for the year ahead. This is standard operating procedure for us, so everybody gets educated. The SMS then serves as a checks and balances system, it takes over during the active season.”

CAS has taken several other steps to enhance safety in the workplace 
(on the ground and in the air) and to mitigate risk to the extent possible.


We ensure compliance with all relative laws and regulations, and we adopt procedures identified as industry best practices.


Fighting wildfires is a seasonal business. That’s because environmental conditions play a major role in causing or aiding in the growth of wildfires. During those months when the wildland fire scene is relatively quiet, we keep our pilots in the air, honing their flight skills and gaining valuable flight time experience by providing them with the opportunity to fly agricultural missions.


of a voluntary, non-punitive reporting system and database using Vocus SMS.


of the Mission Flight Risk Assessment Tool (MFRAT), an operational risk assessment tool designed to predict and remove potential threats to crew safety on a mission-by-mission basis. The MFRAT is implemented electronically, through the MyFirePlane app.


of an electronic document binder through Microsoft Office 365 SharePoint Application. Having all the company’s policies and procedures at their fingertips electronically, in a searchable database, allows employees immediate access to critical safety information 24/7/365 from any device.


high standards when considering pilots for hire and ensuring their ongoing proficiency through the use of regular in-flight performance evaluations and the solicitation of feedback from air attack personnel to be incorporated into their annual performance review.