Greece to acquire 7 new De Havilland DHC-515 waterbombers 

Avatar for Skies MagazineBy Skies Magazine | March 22, 2024

Estimated reading time 3 minutes, 7 seconds.

De Havilland Canada’s DHC-515 waterbomber figures to be a major weapon in the fight against wildfires. De Havilland Photo

Greece has approved a plan to purchase seven new De Havilland Canada DHC-515 waterbombers for US$392 million, in a bid to boost its firefighting fleet.  

The aircraft will be delivered between 2027 and 2030, according to an agreement acquired by Reuters ahead this weekend’s visit to Canada by Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.  

Two of the waterbombers, widely used in Europe, will be part of a European Union RescEU reserve program, meaning they can be available to other European countries in emergencies, per Reuters. The Globe and Mail first reported the deal to Canadian audiences March 19, and the Hellenic Parliament approved the deal March 21.  

“This is a big purchase for us,” said Mitsotakis, per the Globe. 

Calgary-based De Havilland Aircraft of Canada will manufacture the aircraft, which figure to be a formidable weapon against Europe’s increasingly intense wildfires. The new aircraft can carry larger water loads and can fly for longer than Greece’s existing fleet, per Reuters.  

The DHC-515 is a new-production aircraft, updated from the legacy CL-415 waterbomber, and has yet to enter production. 

Viking Air acquired the CL-series from Bombardier in 2016 and later merged with De Havilland. The series also includes the CL-215L, CL-215T and CL-415, previously manufactured under the Canadair brand. 

In Europe the aircraft are commonly known as “Canadairs,” and are widely used on the continent. Mitsotakis has called the Mediterranean a “hot spot for climate change,” as deadly wildfires in the region become increasingly common.  

Last year, 28 people in Greece died in incidents related to wildfires caused by drought, extreme temperatures and arson.  

The new DHC-515 Firefighter is an amphibious aircraft with an upgraded flight deck and advanced avionics suite, and is built for “firefighting duty in every corner of the world,” the company said in a statement. 

Notice a spelling mistake or typo?

Click on the button below to send an email to our team and we will get to it as soon as possible.

Report an error or typo

Have a story idea you would like to suggest?

Click on the button below to send an email to our team and we will get to it as soon as possible.

Suggest a story

Join the Conversation

  1. Avatar for Skies Magazine
  2. Avatar for Skies Magazine


  1. Just a minute, over 600 forest fires in Canada last year. Thousands of hectares burned up and Canada is building water bombers for Greece. No mention of how many we are getting and when. What a bunch of irresponsible dough heads running this country. They should be charged with negligence.

  2. Still none ordered by Canada. Shameful. Canadian company. No support no matter how bad we need these aircraft.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *