HMAS Yarra conducts flying ops with 723 Sqn in Jervis Bay

This article has photo gallery Published on SBLT Sean Rafferty (author), ABCSO(MW) Andrew Llyod (photographer)

Helo Operations conducted on HMAS Yarra with 723 Squadron's 'Bell 429' during Mine Warfare Faculty Assessment Week in Jervis Bay. (photo: ABCSOMW Andrew Lloyd)
Helo Operations conducted on HMAS Yarra with 723 Squadron's 'Bell 429' during Mine Warfare Faculty Assessment Week in Jervis Bay.

HMAS Yarra got off to a flying start to 2016 conducting helicopter operations in Jervis Bay with a helicopter from 723 Squadron in mid February.

The Mine Hunter Coastal was on the New South Wales south coast in order to support the training of the Royal Australian Navy’s latest class of Principal Warfare Officer (Maritime Warfare) students and was joined by a 723 Squadron, Bell 429 helicopter.

Two high-performing members of the ship’s company were selected to be winched up to the aircraft for a short flight before being returned to the deck.

Unlike other warships the Mine Hunter Coastal’s lack a flight deck, with winching being the preferred method of transferring persons or provisions between the helicopter and the ship.

HMAS Yarra’s Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Commander Jason McBain, said working in conjunction with helicopters was regularly practiced to ensure the crew were ready to operate with helicopters at short notice.

“The ship’s company also practiced their emergency reactions, including exercising a crash on deck," he said.

“These latest flying serials have further strengthened the relationship between Yarra and 723 Squadron, providing excellent training and experience for both teams.” 

Jervis Bay provided the perfect backdrop for the training and the day saw some of the local residents take to their own watercraft in order to get a closer look at the activities.