Royal Fleet Auxiliary ship Fort Victoria met up with frigate HMS Richmond in the Persian Gulf for a Replenishment at Sea (RAS) – but the ships chose to do it at night rather than during daylight hours.
Even in daylight RAS serials are challenging because the ships get so close during the refueling and stores transfer.
Fort Victoria’s Navigating Officer, Second Officer Mark Bongartz, said:
Although we are experts at replenishment at sea, undertaking the serial in darkness adds a new dimension to it. We have to be extra careful with the safety and the seamanship at night.
Apart from providing essential supplies to the Portsmouth-based Type 23, the RAS provided a great learning opportunity for RFA apprentice seafarers gaining experience with the ship’s Deck Department.
Since her arrival East of Suez three months ago, RFA Fort Victoria has maintained a busy RAS schedule.
In addition to her role supporting the Royal Navy, RFA Fort Victoria has furthered the Royal Navy’s work with international partners by conducting replenishment serials with the navies of coalition partners in the Persian Gulf, Indian Ocean and Gulf of Aden.
Image: Royal Navy