ATTACK ONE on target

Published on LEUT Kelli Lunt (author), LSIS Andrew Dakin (photographer)

Topic(s): Operation RESOLUTE, HMAS Albany (P86)

ATTACK ONE personnel from HMAS Albany proceed in rigid hull inflatable boats to a simulated Suspected Irregular Entry Vessel (SIEV) during their Mission Readiness Evaluation by Sea Training Unit - Minor War Vessel. (photo: LSIS Andrew Dakin)
ATTACK ONE personnel from HMAS Albany proceed in rigid hull inflatable boats to a simulated Suspected Irregular Entry Vessel (SIEV) during their Mission Readiness Evaluation by Sea Training Unit - Minor War Vessel.

The Armidale Class Patrol Boat crew ATTACK ONE has been deemed mission ready for Operation RESOLUTE following two weeks of training by Sea Training Unit – Minor War Vessels and a final assessment by the senior assessor Commodore Warfare, Commodore Peter Leavy on 13 September.

COMWAR embarked in HMAS Albany to put Commanding Officer Lieutenant Justine Archer and her crew through their paces to ensure they were capable of meeting all Operation RESOLUTE mission requirements.

With the training vessel Discovery III simulating a Foreign Fishing Vessel and a Suspected Irregular Entry Vessel as required, Attack One was able to successfully demonstrate competence in a variety of different boarding scenarios, across the gamut of trying physical, materiel and legal difficulties that are regularly encountered during border protection operations.

Personnel from the Sea Training Unit and the recently qualified Transit Security Element (TSE) 70 embarked Discovery III to simulate a number of the difficulties encountered during border protection operations, including engineering defects, as well as the typical water ingress and sea-worthiness hazards that are regularly encountered on target vessels.

COMWAR gained insight into, and an understanding of the level of interaction between the embarked TSE, who are comprised of tri-service personnel from both the permanent and reserve force, and Navy crews.

“It is pleasing to see all three services working hard and so well together to achieve the mission,” CDRE Leavy said.

“ATTACK ONE demonstrated the competencies required of them to successfully conduct the Operation RESOLUTE mission as a force assigned unit. Together with their TSE colleagues, the crew confirmed just how well they have been able to take on board the professional training provided by the Sea Training Unit here in Darwin.”

The members of TSE were equally excited about the chance to deploy on Operation RESOLUTE, and spoke very highly of the training and exposure to operations and everyday life onboard an Armidale Class Patrol Boat.

Private Esthelle Jones, a member of TSE 70 said the training in the lead up to mission readiness had been demanding but it was a challenge she enjoyed.

“TSE is a very highly sought after deployment for us; I am very proud to have been selected for the opportunity. The training has been both fun and challenging, and I am looking forward to the chance to help out,” PTE Jones said.

This collective training and assessment period has been one of many conducted by STU-MWV during a very high tempo six months. Based in Cairns and Darwin, the small team of twenty sea trainers conducts Mariner Skills and Unit Readiness training and assessment for all Minor War Vessels (MWV) and Hydrographic Survey Ships (HSS) as well as Mission Readiness training and assessment for MWVs, HSS, Major Fleet Units (MFU) and TSE deploying for Operation RESOLUTE.

Imagery is available on the Royal Australian Navy Media Library at http://images.defence.gov.au/S20131428.