RFA Argus completes overhaul after Ebola mission

RFA Argus. Photo: Royal Navy
RFA Argus. Photo: Royal Navy

UK’s Royal Fleet Auxiliary ship Argus on March 25 departed the Falmouth dock after undergoing a year-long overhaul at A&P’s shipyard.

Prior to the overhaul, the 28,000-tonne support ship supported efforts to curb the spread of Ebola in West Africa.

During her 172 days in support of Operation Gritrock – the codename for the British military’s response to the disease’s outbreak in Sierra Leone – Argus served as the base for Merlin helicopters to ferry medicine, food and supplies around the country, both to our forces on the ground treating the local populace, and for people in isolated or cut-off communities.

In addition, her medical facilities were available to treat any British personnel taken ill.

According to the Royal Navy, cases of Ebola in Sierra Leone dropped tenfold while Argus was deployed.

Capt David Eagles, RFA Argus’ Commanding Officer, said: “Argus was deployed for six months, during which time she was only alongside for 12 hours.”

“This remarkable endurance is testament to the high quality work carried out at A&P Falmouth in maintaining the Royal Navy’s primary casualty receiving facility.”

Before Argus left the jetty to begin trials A&P’s Steve Wheeler and Simon Timmins presented Capt Eagles with a print of the ship returning from her Ebola mission.