Since returning to sea this March, after an extended refit period, Australian Navy’s Landing Ship Dock HMAS Choules spent most of the year taking part in numerous amphibious training and aviation exercises.
Among the most important tasks in 2013, HMAS Choules participated in joint amphibious Exercise SEA LION with the Australian Army, combined US Defence Force Exercise TALISMAN SABER and Operation LANDSCAPE.
Lieutenant Commander Mills pointed out: “One of the highlights for the crew was holding our own International Fleet Review, which gave everyone a good laugh. We were originally scheduled to take part in the IFR, so we decided to hold our own, so as to feel part of the celebrations back at home.”
Choules also provided support to the country’s Department of Immigration and Border Protection operation between July and October, aimed at increasing the capacity of the facilities on Manus Island. During this period, the ship provided a floating home to about 230 Australian Government personnel and service providers.
HMAS Choules, returned to her homeport of Garden Island, Sydney in November, after which the ship proceeded to a short period of scheduled assisted maintenance.
Naval Today Staff, December 31, 2013; Image: RAN