Future of HMAS Bundaberg Still Unknown

Australian Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett, has today inspected the fire damage sustained by the Armidale Class Patrol Boat HMAS Bundaberg when she caught fire in a Brisbane dockyard on Monday.

 

Bundaberg was undergoing a period of routine maintenance in the custody of civilian contractors when the fire started onboard, inside a shed at Aluminium Boats Australia (ABA), in Hemmant.

The Queensland Fire Brigade worked for more than four hours to bring the intense fire under control.

Vice Admiral Barrett joined the ship’s current Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Commander Phil Draper, and ABA Shipyard CEO, Mr. Andrew Lawson, at the dockyard this morning to inspect the damage.

“We will not know the future of Bundaberg until an investigation is completed into the level of damage,” Vice Admiral Barrett said.

While at the site, Vice Admiral Barrett spoke with personnel from the Queensland Fire and Emergency Service, and thanked them for their diligent response to the incident on Monday.

“When you look at the damage caused by this fire, the first thing that comes to mind is how fortunate we are that there were no casualties. The Queensland Fire and Emergency Service did an outstanding job to get this fire under control, and we owe them our gratitude,” he said.

Bundaberg was one of 14 patrol boats being rotated through border protection operations, but given that she had begun a period of extended maintenance, her materiel state will cause no immediate effect to ongoing operations.

Press Release, August 13, 2014; Image: Australian Navy

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