The ForestrySA FireKing

Designed and built for the rigorous demands of forest firefighting

Our state-of-the-art FireKing fire tankers have undergone complete refurbishment in 2023, after almost 20 years on the frontline protecting South Australian forests and communities.

The custom-built fleet was commissioned back in 2005 to meet the niche requirements of forest-firefighting. Built on the same tough chassis as the Australian Army’s Bushmaster vehicles, the appliances provide unrivalled crew protection and frontline fire access in plantations and steep terrain.

And now after substantial investment in four ForestrySA FireKings, with upgraded running gear, engine, electrics, fire equipment and additional crew safety features, the appliances are ready to protect our community for many more years to come.

Take a look through these impressive vehicles with our Fire Manager, Dan Brind, via the video below.



Fire protection – we’re in it for the longhaul

ForestrySA remains committed to community fire protection, preparedness and response, and go above and beyond to provide the resources, time and effort to keep our own commercial assets and the surrounding community as protected as possible.

Our crews have stood shoulder-to-shoulder with locals during our almost 150 years in forestry, through devastating fire events such as Ash Wednesday, the 1958 Wandilo Forest Fire and more recently, the 2019 Cudlee Creek Bushfires.

The losses sustained in these events will never be forgotten and continue to teach us important lessons in resilience, innovation and forest firefighting. They have helped shape the way we do things today and led to major improvements in fire equipment, training, communications and safety benchmarks.

Our longstanding relationship with the Country Fire Service, local brigades, volunteers and emergency services also ensures we’re working together towards the same goal – community fire safety and protection.

Th 2023 FireKing rebuild forms an important part of our broadscale commitment to community bushfire protection, ensuring we are ready and fit for duty in the years ahead.

Scroll down for vehicle specs and more information, or read our media release here.

About the ForestrySA FireKing 2023

  • Built on the same tough chassis as the Australian Army’s Bushmaster, the reinforced, V-shaped hull was originally designed to protect passengers from explosions and landmines. It enables a lower centre of gravity for the FireKing’s onboard water tanks and safer crew transport.
  • Up to four fire crew members can be seated inside the cabin.
  • 3,700L of water carried on board: 3,000L for firefighting and 700L reserve for crew safety via the vehicle sprinkler system.
  • Several hundred metres of canvas fire hose, allowing water to be pumped deep into the forest.
  • All hose fittings connect seamlessly with CFS tankers and firefighting appliances.
  • 330 horsepower CAT turbo diesel engine and automatic 6-speed transmission, 4WD independent suspension and disc brakes, ensuring vehicle capability in the most adverse of conditions.
  • Unmatched crew protection. Heat protective window coverings and vehicle sprinkler system allow the vehicle to withstand temperatures up to 1,000°C, protecting crews in the event of a burn-over.
  • Overhauled electrics to modernise onboard operating systems. LED lighting upgrades to improve crew safety during night operations.