The Type 23 Frigate has been practising emergency drills to deal with a fire at sea or a helicopter crash on the flight deck.
Deployed to the South Atlantic, HMS Iron Duke carried out the drills shortly after leaving her home port of Portsmouth to ensure all of the ships company are prepared should the worst ever happen.
Air Engineering Technician, Pete Crowe, who works on the frigate’s flight deck, said: “It’s tough work inside a thick and heavy fire-suit, carrying the equipment and breathing apparatus, but everyone from the Captain down has to do this.”
For the exercise specially trained teams donned their fire-suits to tackle the emerging scenario of a crashed helicopter.
The fire team rescued the aircrew then set about protecting the ship by extinguishing the fire as quickly as possible.
Using bespoke fire-fighting equipment, the team is able to put out fires and protect the 5,000 tonne warship which is home to a company of over 190.
Leading Seaman Colin ‘Dinger’ Bell, one of the ship’s gunnery team played the casualty.
He said: “Playing a casualty is often a bit of an easy time as you don’t have to wear the heavy kit.
“The down side is sometimes you end up getting soaked when the fire team ‘puts you out’.”
HMS Iron Duke recently completed eight weeks of intensive training which tested her ability to deal with any situation and almost everyday, there would be a simulated fire or flood.
Press Release, June 30, 2014; Image: UK Navy