Dutch Navy Sailors Practice Replenishment at Sea Using British Training Rig
Sailors from the Royal Netherlands Navy have practiced re-storing a ship at sea with fuel and other essential supplies, using the training facilities at HMS Raleigh in Cornwall.
A group of 13 Seaman Specialists used HMS Raleigh’s replenishment at sea (RAS) training rig, which simulates the transfer of stores, food supplies, liquids, such as fuel, and personnel between auxiliary vessels and warships.
The training was delivered and assessed by instructors from the Royal Netherlands Navy supported by Royal Navy personnel and forms part of the Dutch sailors’ eight month course to prepare them for promotion.
Royal Netherlands Navy instructor Boatswain Niels Van Rooden said:
“These students are our future Petty Officers and being able to train here is very valuable as we currently don’t have a facility like this.
“This facility enables us to train in a controlled situation.
“If we were to put them on a ship straight away accidents could happen, whereas this gives us more time to explain things on the spot.”
Warrant Officer Dave Deakin, Seamanship Training Officer, said:
“Replenishment at sea is one of the most hazardous seamanship tasks undertaken by all Navies. It is a vital part of allowing ships to stay at sea maintaining the task in support of ongoing global operations.
“Methods of replenishment are very similar for all nations, thus allowing all Navies to re-supply each other whilst deployed.
“A variety of nations use the facility at HMS Raleigh, primarily those conducting Operational Sea Training in Plymouth however, the Netherlands Navy have gone one step further and have for the last few years trained their Seamanship Specialists here at the Royal Navy’s Seamanship Training Unit.”
During their visit the Dutch Navy were taken on a tour of the new RAS training rig at HMS Raleigh, which is currently under construction.
The £25 million project is being managed by Rolls-Royce Power Engineering PLC and building works are nearly complete.
Initially it will be used to trial and prove new equipment for the Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers, once proven the facility will become a state-of-the art training facility.
Naval Today Staff, February 11, 2013; Image: Royal Navy