Aussies take on the Armada

This article has photo gallery Published on MIDN Owen Snell (author)

Topic(s): HMAS Hobart (D39), NUSHIP Brisbane (D41), NUSHIP Sydney (D42), Exercise OCEAN EXPLORER, Training Authority Maritime Warfare

Royal Australian Navy and Spanish Armada Special Sea Dutymen close up on the flight deck of ESPS Cristóbal Colón for entry into Sydney Harbour following exercises at sea. (photo: Unknown)
Royal Australian Navy and Spanish Armada Special Sea Dutymen close up on the flight deck of ESPS Cristóbal Colón for entry into Sydney Harbour following exercises at sea.

Three months have passed since the Spanish Armada’s ESPS Cristóbal Colón sailed in to Australian waters and sailors from both navies have wasted no time in forming new friendships and maximising learning opportunities.
 
More than half of the ship’s company of future Australian Navy destroyer Hobart have embarked in the F100 class frigate for systems training ahead of the commissioning of HMAS Hobart later this year.
 
The experience has proved invaluable for Australian sailors getting to know the platform under the friendly guidance of Cristóbal Colón’s ship’s company.
 
Hobart
 Officer of the Watch, Sub Lieutenant Adam Piotrowski said the orientation was invaluable.
 
Cristóbal Colón is almost identical in layout and systems to the new destroyer, so you can’t ask for better preparation than that,” he said.
 
“Being on board Cristóbal Colón for the duration of Exercise OCEAN EXPLORER was the highlight.
 
“The tempo was high, with Cristóbal Colón protecting other ships in our task group which meant that I could see how Hobart will operate in to the future as part of a maritime task group,” Sub Lieutenant Piotrowski said.
 
Sailors from a variety of departments have been inducted on board Cristóbal Colón including maritime warfare officers, boatswains mates, and marine engineering and weapons electrical specialists.
 
Royal Australian Navy personnel have also taken charge of the Spanish ship during close quarters manoeuvres and damage control scenarios such as simulated steering gear failure.
 
The Australian contingent observed Cristóbal Colón’s sophisticated weapon systems in action with air and surface target live firing as well as small arms exercises.
 
Two midshipmen are also undertaking part of their Junior Warfare Application Course, providing an unparalleled opportunity to work with a foreign navy and gain an appreciation of the new capability about to enter the Australian fleet.
 
Cristóbal Colón
 has taken part in exercises on both sides of the continent during her Australian visit and participated in Anzac Day commemorations.