FGS Niedersachsen Sailors Get Voting Papers Onboard
On Wednesday 11 September, German frigate FGS Niedersachsen received a special kind of air mail, when a Spanish Maritime Patrol Aircraft parachuted in voting papers for 20 sailors on board for the forthcoming parliamentary elections in Germany.
The warship, which has 230 men and women on board is currently doing counter piracy patrols off the Somali coast as part of the European Union Naval Force.
Most of the sailors had received their election forms when the ship was alongside Djibouti earlier in the month, however, some of the voting forms did not arrive in time before the ship had to return to her sea patrols.
So that all the sailors would be able to cast their vote on election day, a solution was quickly found, when the Spanish maritime patrol aircraft stepped in to help.
The Spanish maritime patrol aircraft, which is stationed in Djibouti placed the 20 election forms in to a specially designed orange cylinder and flew out to the ship. When it was just 200 metres away, the cylinder was dropped in to the sea and it was quickly picked up by the ship’s boarding team.
Once the election forms were filled in, they were sent back to Germany in time for the elections.
Press Release, September 18, 2013; Image: EU NAVFOR