Cadet day at sea onboard HMAS Melville

This article has photo gallery Published on LEUT Nicole Francis (author and photographer)

Location(s): Darwin, Northern Territory

Able Seaman Boatswain's Mate Dent instructs Cadet Able Seaman Kellner and Cadet Recruit Tapera-Riare on the various fire fighting techniques used onboard HMAS Melville. (photo: LEUT Nicole Francis)
Able Seaman Boatswain's Mate Dent instructs Cadet Able Seaman Kellner and Cadet Recruit Tapera-Riare on the various fire fighting techniques used onboard HMAS Melville.

Navy cadets have enjoyed an ‘at sea’ experience with a day onboard Leeuwin class surveying ship, HMAS Melville.  
 
Deployed from Cairns in March to undertake an 11 week survey task off the North West shelf of Australia, Melville conducted a port visit to Darwin over the Easter long weekend. 
 

The visit to Darwin afforded the chance for Melville to embark 22 cadets and two staff members from Training Ship Darwin
 
On arrival, the cadets were greeted by Commander Nic Zillman. They also participated in the Colours ceremony on the Quarterdeck. The cadets were escorted by two serving members who were former cadets.
 
“In my eight years at the unit, our cadets have never had the opportunity to proceed to sea on a Navy ship,” said Commanding Officer, TS Darwin, Lieutenant Australian Navy Cadets, Stephen McGreevy. 
 
Throughout the day the cadets participated in a variety of activities including a ship tour, observing the ship depart from Fort Hill Wharf, dressing in thermal protective suits, boarding party equipment, full fire fighting rig and handling a fire hose. Once the ship had exited the Darwin channel, a man overboard exercise was conducted where two cadets assisted with deploying the floation dummy, raising the alarm and observing the process of launching and recovering the sea boat. Following the exercise the cadets assisted with the recovery of the lifebuoys using grappling hooks. The day was topped off by a typical Navy meal served by Navy chefs. 
 
The sea day was a success by all accounts, emphasised by an email received from one of the cadets’ parents: 
 
“He had an awesome time in HMAS Melville and thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of the day. It served to strengthen his interest in joining the Navy so it was a valuable day for him”. 
 
Every Navy ship is twinned with an Australian Navy Cadet Unit within Australia to enable a rapport to be developed between the cadets and serving members, and to encourage cadets to gain an understanding of Navy life. Melville is twinned with Training Ships DarwinBroome and Melville Bay.

For more information on Navy Cadets visit the Australian Navy Cadet website