South Australia enjoys Navy amphib hospitality

This article has photo gallery Published on LCDR Ben Robinson and LEUT Rilana Ostheim (author), ABIS Ryan McKenzie (photographer)

Location(s): Adelaide, SA

Topic(s): HMAS Adelaide (L01), Open Day

Members of the public board HMAS Adelaide during the Open Day in Adelaide, SA. (photo: ABIS Ryan McKenzie)
Members of the public board HMAS Adelaide during the Open Day in Adelaide, SA.

HMAS Adelaide (III), the second of two Canberra class amphibious ships and the largest ever built for the Royal Australian Navy, opened her doors to the Adelaide public for only the second time on the weekend.

Commissioned in December 2015, Adelaide, also known as a Landing Helicopter Dock, provides one of the most capable and sophisticated air-land-sea amphibious deployment systems in the world.

Commanding Officer, Captain Jonathan Ley said the arrival of his ship into her namesake city was a proud moment for the crew.

“The ship’s company were keen to reaffirm Navy’s long-lasting heritage in the city of Adelaide, ignite public interest, a sense of pride in the Adelaide community and it was a great opportunity to show the public her capabilities,” Captain Ley said.

“At 230 metres long, and more than 30 metres high, the 27,000 tonne warship can land a force of over 1000 personnel by helicopter and water craft, along with weapons, ammunition, vehicles and stores while she can reach speeds of up to 20 knots (35km/h) over a maximum range of approximately 6000 km.

“The ship is widely considered a game-changer in the Australian Defence Force, marking a shift to expeditionary warfare.

This was demonstrated by the embarkation of over 50 vehicles from the 7th Battalion,  The Royal Australian Regiment, including armed personnel carriers, reconnaissance vehicles and protected logistics vehicles.

“The ship is also well equipped for large scale humanitarian and disaster relief missions, featuring two operating theatres, an eight-bed critical care unit, resuscitation, pathology, radiology, x-ray, pharmacy and dental facilities,” Captain Ley said.

Adelaide’s visit also included Freedom of Entry to the city, where the ship’s company were welcomed by the Lord Mayor of Adelaide, The Right Honourable Ms Sandy Verschoor.

“We were absolutely thrilled to showcase the ship’s personnel and equipment and it was a great honour to meet the community whose name we carry with such pride,” Captain Ley said.

“I would like to thank Adelaide residents for their very generous welcome and hospitality over the past week and look forward to our next visit.”

Additional imagery is available on the Defence Image Gallery: