The F-100 frigates ‘Álvaro de Bazán’, ‘Almirante Juan de Borbón’, ‘Blas de Lezo’ and ‘Méndez Núñez’ from the 31st Escort Squadron have participated in a series of exercises off the Galician coast from the 9th to the 13th of June.
The goal was to enhance training on anti-air warfare, operations with helicopters, replenishment at sea, shipping control and asymmetric warfare.
‘MAR-41’ exercises are recurring drills designed to improve readiness levels of crews for the most frequent type of operations conducted by these AEGIS frigates.
The LHD ‘Juan Carlos I’ participated the first two days of the exercise with her AB-212 helicopters and AV-8B Harrier aircraft. The LHD, currently taking part in a training cruise with Naval Academy students, conducted several drills on anti-air warfare procedures and operations with helicopters on flight decks.
The following days (11th and 12th) the fleet oiler (AOR) ‘Cantabria’ conducted a series of replenishment at sea (RAS) drills transferring fuel and cargo to the different units, and participating in shipping control and asymmetric warfare operations. Other collaborating units included the oceanic patrol vessels (OPV) ‘Serviola’ and ‘Centinela’ and the offshore tug ‘Mahón’.
During the exercise, Marine Corps units played an important part at some stage of the scheduled drills with asymmetric warfare and shipping control exercises participating with fast craft and MC Security Squads embarked on board the frigate ‘Méndez Núñez’.
Spanish Navy ensigns and midshipmen from the Naval Academy and sergeants from the Specialties Schools ‘Antonio de Escaño’ and ‘La Graña’ also embarked in different units to take part in the training exercises.
Press Release, June 16, 2014; Image: Spanish Navy