The Royal Australian Navy’s newest and one of its largest ever warships, HMAS Adelaide has departed Sydney Harbour and is now fully engaged in her first unit readiness work-up.
Ship’s company had little time to appreciate the significance of the milestone with Adelaide’s work-up beginning in earnest immediately after the 27,000 tonne ship cleared the heads.
The first damage control alarm sounded throughout the ship not long after departure, “Smoke, smoke, smoke! Smoke in the Aviation Workshop. Standing Sea Fire Party muster and investigate.”
Officer of the Watch manoeuvres followed, and then helicopter operations. All on day number one.
The scenarios will repeat themselves and grow even more complex over the next three weeks as Sea Training Group tests Adelaide to see if she is ready to conduct humanitarian aid, disaster relief and non-combatant evacuation operations.
Lead Sea Trainer and Fleet Direction Officer, Lieutenant Commander Marc Beecroft, said the delivery of disaster relief training was of the highest importance to the Australian Defence Force.
“Royal Australian Navy major fleet units are held at high levels of readiness, often just 48 hours notice to move, for operations such as humanitarian aid, disaster relief and non-combatant evacuation,” he said.
“The context of this readiness is that deployed fleet units may well find themselves as a first responder to a natural disaster or where a situation in a foreign country requires the evacuation of Australian citizens.”
Consistent demonstrations of proficiency over all tasks are needed to pass the evaluation.
Those areas include damage control, seamanship, navigation, non-combatant evacuation, and helicopter and landing craft operations.
Lieutenant Commander Beecroft said Adelaide's ship's company had an “excellent attitude” to initial work-up training.
Commanding Officer Adelaide, Captain Paul Mandziy said personnel had been in training since accepting the new ship last year and was confident by the end of the workup the ship and her company would prove to be unit ready.
“This crew has worked hard to bring Adelaide into service," he said.
"They have been enthusiastic and always eager to improve their knowledge of the ship and its systems.
“I feel proud of what we have achieved to this point and I am confident we will meet this challenge with the same level of professionalism and dedication we have shown so far.”
More information on the ship can be found by visiting the Navy website HMAS Adelaide