Penguin sailors serving with pride

This article has photo gallery Published on WO John O'Brien (author and photographer)

Location(s): Sydney, New South Wales

Commanding Officer HMAS Penguin, Commander Ian Campbell  presented Leading Seaman Clearance Diver Dean Martin witha a Commanding Officers Commendation award. (photo: WO John O'Brien)
Commanding Officer HMAS Penguin, Commander Ian Campbell presented Leading Seaman Clearance Diver Dean Martin witha a Commanding Officers Commendation award.

Commanding Officer HMAS Penguin has recognised contributions of three standout sailors in a recent presentation ceremony.

One sailor was recognised with a Commanding Officer's Commendation for identifying a hazard and preventing a possibly dangerous situation.

Leading Seaman Clearance Diver Dean Martin, now based at Penguin, saw an industrial generator had been placed next to the North Wharf at Waterhen to provide shore power and identified a potential danger.  

“I noticed the generator exhaust fumes were pointing directly towards the intake for the fixed air charging station used to charge diving cylinders,” he said.

“As cylinders for ships alongside were being charged from the compressor at the time, I knew I had to act as this could create a very dangerous situation,” Leading Seaman Martin said.

“I informed Australian Clearance Diving Team One of the issue, isolated and tagged the charging panel, assisted the team with an air purity test and informed the ships alongside so they could check their cylinders weren’t contaminated.” 

Commanding Officer HMAS Penguin, Commander Ian Campbell, who presented the award, said that Leading Seaman Martin demonstrated an exceptional degree of personal initiative.

“Leading Seaman Martin displayed moral courage and attention to detail, when he recognised and spoke up about a potentially catastrophic situation,” he said.

“Safety is everyone’s business and anyone who notices a hazard should have the courage to act. 

"Don’t be in the mindset that someone else will report it - by speaking up you could save lives,” Commander Campbell said.

“Personnel should tell their supervisor if they see anything unsafe and also make sure it is reported.”

Two other members were recognised at the same presentation.  Able Seaman Dental Edward Todd was awarded his Defence Long Service Medal for 15 years service in the Royal Australian Navy.

Leading Seaman Hydrographic Operator Richard Frey was presented with a Certificate of Appreciation from the Chief of Navy for 20 years service in the Royal Australian Navy.  Leading Seaman Frey originally joined the Navy as a marine technician however, he changed over to the Hydrographic branch ten years ago.