ADF search and rescue mission

A Royal Australian Navy MRH-90 Taipan helicopter evacuated nine stranded campers, including a nine year old boy and a pet dog from the Wollondilly Forest, south-west of Sydney, on Wednesday.

CAPTION: A Royal Australian Navy MRH-90 Taipan multirole helicopter from 808 Squadron, prepares to launch from HMAS Albatross in support of Operation NSW Flood Assist. Photo by LAC John Solomon.

The evacuees became isolated for a number of days following rising floodwaters.

Operating under NSW State Emergency Services (SES) direction, the MRH-90 helicopter from 808 Squadron at HMAS Albatross, Nowra, located the group and delivered them to safety.

The evacuees were taken to Mittagong sports field where they were met by members of the NSW SES.

Following the evacuation, the Navy helicopter then continued support operations before returning to base at HMAS Albatross.

ADF is assisting NSW state emergency services as part of Operation NSW Flood Assist 21-1.

ADF’s first priority has been to assist state emergency services to evacuate people from dangerous situations.

There are currently two Navy helicopters supporting aerial search and rescue operations, with four Army MRH-90 Taipan helicopters arriving from Townsville today (March 25) to significantly boost state rotary-wing capabilities, vital in the emergency response phase.

As floodwaters recede, the ADF will play a key part in assessing the damage and supporting the multi-agency response.

The ADF’s commitment is expected to increase to around 700 personnel as increased recovery and repair activities take place.

 

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