On HMAS Leeuwin’s recent departure from Jakarta, the crew were joined by six members of the Indonesian Navy for the ship’s five day passage to Port Klang, Malaysia. The embarked sea riders were Hydrographic Survey and Oceanographic specialist Officers from Pushidrosal, Indonesia’s Hydrographic and Oceanographic organisation.
The aim of the sea ride was to further develop the relationships that had been established during Leeuwin’s port visit to Jakarta. Throughout the passage, the Officers participated in professional development and knowledge sharing activities and gained first hand experience in Royal Australian Navy methods and procedures in the conduct of Hydrographic Surveying and Combat Survivability.
A highlight for the sea riders was the opportunity to participate in the ship’s Combat Survivability training program where they noted the high standard of fire-fighting training that was demonstrated by the entire crew, and were surprised that these activities were a whole of ship evolution.
The sea riders integrated well into Leeuwin’s team and the crew thoroughly enjoyed their company. One of the embarked Officers, LTCDR Darius Rizki Khair, from Tentara Nasional Indonesia-Angkatan Laut (TNI-AL), said he was amazed by how friendly and welcoming the ship’s company were throughout the passage. He stated that it highlighted to him that the Royal Australian Navy were a professional and welcoming organisation.
The Commanding Officer of Leeuwin, LCDR Peter Locke, said the sea ride activity highlighted that hydrographers of all nationalities share similar views, especially the satisfaction of creating a tangible nautical product used by mariners for navigation safety and the importance of survey equipment reliability.
“The opportunity to build professional relationships and networks with like-minded Hydrographic Surveyors and Oceanographers from another country was an important part of being a practitioner in this highly specialised field,” LCDR Locke said.
HMAS Leeuwin will continue its South-East Asian deployment before returning to homeport in Cairns, QLD in late August for some well-deserved R&R.