The Australian Defence Force is testing its newest amphibious capability ahead of the upcoming cyclone season.
Exercise Sea Raider off far-north Queensland involves some 1400 troops embarked in HMAS Canberra with medium-lift helicopters, landing craft and small boats, trucks, troop carriers and other vehicles.
Conducted by the Brisbane-based Deployable Joint Force Headquarters under command of Major General Stuart Smith, Exercise Sea Raider is supported by HMAS Stuart, Air Force assets and commando forces as well as other government agencies.
The ADF works closely with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade as the lead agency for Australian government responses to overseas emergencies.
Major General Smith said inter-agency exercises were designed to help the ADF and DFaT work together efficiently and cooperatively in a crisis.
“This amphibious force has been tested in scenarios that reflect tasks the Australian government may direct in response to local and regional emergencies,” he said.
Commander of the Amphibious Task Force Captain Jay Bannister stressed the importance of Exercise Sea Raider.
“We have now come to the third and most testing phase of the Sea Series – Exercise Sea Raider. The exercise is a rehearsal for future humanitarian assistance and disaster-relief missions as well as civilian evacuations across a broad landscape with support from colleagues from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade,” Captain Bannister said.
“I have every confidence that the team will rise to the complex challenges of the final exercise of Sea Series 15.”
The Sea Series of exercises will conclude in early October.