Australian Clearance Diving Team One (AUSCDT ONE) recently showcased their newly developed Maritime Counter Terrorism-Explosive Ordnance Disposal (MCT-EOD) capability to Fleet Command.
Commander Australian Fleet, Rear Admiral Tim Barrett and Commander Mine Warfare, Clearance Diving, Hydrographic, Meteorological and Patrol Force, Captain Bob Plath attended HMAS Waterhen for the demonstration, during which the divers showcased their newly enhanced skills.
The MCT-EOD element was recently stood up to provide Explosive Ordnance (EOD) and Improvised Explosive Device Disposal (IEDD) mobility support to Australian Defence Force units. To achieve this mission, personnel undertake extensive training which includes specialist insertion techniques including diving, fast roping and parachuting.
Once on task, the teams are trained to conduct EOD and IEDD at a rapid speed, to maintain the momentum of a direct assault mission.
The Element has only recently been implemented, following a restructure of Royal Australian Navy Clearance Diving Teams at the end of 2012. The recently remodelled teams have been reshaped into five force elements to best suit Australian Defence Force mission requirements. This includes Maritime Tactical Operations (MTO); Mine Countermeasures (MCM), Underwater Damage Repair (UDR); Task Group Explosive Ordnance Disposal (TG EOD); and Maritime Counter Terrorism-Explosive Ordnance Disposal (MCT-EOD).
Commanding Officer of AUSCDT ONE, Lieutenant Commander Sean Logan says the introduction of MCT-EOD capability is progressing well.
“The guys were keen to develop these specialist skills from the start. This has been very evident in their commitment to the training.”
“While we are yet to realise the full level of capability that we’re aiming for; the team has done an exceptional job in a short period of time,” said Lieutenant Commander Logan.
Mine Warfare and Clearance Diving Officers (MCDO) are the Australian Defence Forces Maritime EOD/IEDD specialists. Their role is to render safe or dispose of Unexploded Ordnance (UXO), Improvised Explosive Devices and explosive material.
Press Release, July 31, 2013; Image: Australian Navy