Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Huey … another time, another war

Early today Sanibel sounded a bit like Vietnam in the late sixties. It was the nostalgic lub-dup-dup-dup sound of a Huey maneuvering at low altitude. Nothing else makes that noise. The Lee County Mosquito Control District has five Hueys (UH-1E) in its inventory, as well as 5 ancient C-47s to now wage war against mosquitoes, not Charlie. While the LCMCD has a number of quiet, vibration free and air conditioned Jet Rangers, the preferred delivery system remains the Huey. It can carry 300 gallons of liquids, the Jet Ranger only 90. The greatest saving is the time and fuel spent ferrying back and forth to replenish the delivery tanks. The Huey was a breakthrough helicopter with its lightweight gas turbine engine when it entered service in the late ‘50s. It’s great to see it still in operation.

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