Three's company for Commonwealth Navies

Published on LEUT Ryan Zerbe (author), ABIS Christopher Szumlanski (photographer)

Topic(s): HMAS Adelaide (L01), HMAS Melbourne (F05), Exercise RIMPAC, HMAS Success (OR 304)

HMNZS Te Mana leads HMAS Melbourne as both ships sail in formation through the Pacific Ocean while underway towards Hawaii for Exercise RIMPAC 2018. (photo: ABIS Christopher Szumlanski)
HMNZS Te Mana leads HMAS Melbourne as both ships sail in formation through the Pacific Ocean while underway towards Hawaii for Exercise RIMPAC 2018.

Ships representing three of Her Majesty’s Navies have practiced a number of maritime evolutions on their way to war games in Hawaii.

HMA Ships AdelaideMelbourne and Success were joined by HMNZS Te Mana and HMCS Vancouver of the Royal New Zealand and Royal Canadian Navies respectively as the Joint Task Group transited towards Exercise Rim of the Pacific 2018 (RIMPAC 2018), a large-scale multinational maritime exercise.

All five ships used their transit in company to sharpen their skills ahead of RIMPAC 2018 by conducting Officer of the Watch manoeuvres, replenishments at sea (RAS) and flying operations in embarked helicopters.

HMAS Adelaide’s Navigating Officer LCDR Lachlan Browne said the frequent interaction between Australia and New Zealand’s Defence Forces made Te Mana’s integration into the Joint Task Group seamless, and that Vancouver was also able to join smoothly.

“All three Navies operate from the same allied tactical publications, so initial integration was relatively easy despite some small challenges at the outset integrating our communications circuits,” he said.

“HMAS Adelaide is the ‘Screen Commander’, meaning she manages navigation plan of all ships in the Joint Task Group, their course and speed to ensure we can train together and reach Hawaii safely.

“The Royal Australian Navy has invested a great deal of time and effort to build up and refine Joint Task Group operations in recent years and it is now fantastic to continue our development with the aid of Te Mana and Vancouver,” Lieutenant Commander Browne said.

Adelaide, Melbourne, Toowoomba and Success have recently completed the first phase of Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2018, a series of key engagement activities with Australia’s regional partners in Fiji, Tonga, Vanuatu and Samoa.

For more information and resources about RIMPAC 2018, visit http://www.navy.gov.au/operations-and-exercises/rimpac-2018