Sailor grasps Pacific opportunity

Seaman Jarrod Tusani didn’t expect to be sailing in the Pacific region just four weeks after graduating as an electronics technician.

CAPTION: Seaman Jarrod Tusani onboard Australian Defence Vessel Reliant in Honiara. Story by Lieutenant Geoff Long. Photo by Leading Seaman Jarrod Mulvihill.

But when the call went out for volunteers to join ADV Reliant on a six-week rotation, the 21-year-old sailor knew it was an opportunity he did not want to miss.

Not only would it provide valuable at-sea experience in his new trade, he said it would allow him to see a region that is linked to his Samoan heritage.

“My dad’s family are all from Samoa so he’s super proud that I’m in the Pacific and seeing different island cultures,” Seaman Tusani said.

“To be part of a ship that is providing support to Pacific nations makes it all the more special.”

Reliant will spend up to 300 days a year in the Pacific area of operations, taking on humanitarian and disaster response missions that are managed by Defence in consultation with Pacific Island partners

Reliant has a rotating civilian crew supplied by Defence partner TK Shipping, with ADF personnel also joining the ship as required.

Seaman Tusani graduated from his electronics technician training in September and is currently posted to the Fleet Support Unit at HMAS Cairns.

He said the deployment on Reliant was providing him with opportunities to broaden his skills base.

“I’ve been working alongside the civilian electronics technician and helping him look after the navigation and radar systems on the landing craft, so it’s been a great learning experience,” he said.

“I’ve been surprised by how advanced some of the electronics are on the ship.”

Seaman Tusani grew up in the south-east Queensland city of Logan and finished his secondary education at Eagleby Learning Campus.

He said he was enticed to join Navy to get a trade and expand his horizons.

“Navy has met all of my expectations and there aren’t many other 21-year-olds out sailing the Pacific and learning new things every day,” he said.

“If I could stay longer on Reliant I would, but hopefully I’ll post to a ship soon. That’s the goal because I love the ocean.”





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