The Royal Canadian Navy said three of its vessels, together with the recently integrated Spanish replenishment ship SPS Patiño departed Halifax, Canada to conduct a Task Group exercise along the country’s eastern seaboard.
Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Athabaskan and Halifax, along with SPS Patiño, set sail yesterday and will join HMCS Charlottetown, which departed earlier in the week, to take part in the exercise. The ships will operate at sea from February through March, conducting replenishment and combat serials that will test all levels of ship and fleet readiness.
Fleet exercises, involving two or more RCN vessels operating together, are referred to as Task Group Exercises (TGEX). TGEXs hone crew skill sets and test fleet readiness to deploy on and execute a wide variety of maritime security assignments.
Deployed maritime forces will continue to be organized around the concept of the naval task group for the foreseeable future. This exercise marks SPS Patiño’s first participation in Atlantic fleet exercises since its arrival in Halifax on February 12.
The Task Group training with SPS Patiño will provide operational experience that will enhance the individual skill sets and core seamanship abilities within the Canadian Fleet that are essential to deployed operations. This Exercise will also assist RCN sailors in retaining the expertise necessary to operate the Queenston-class supply ships once they are delivered.
The exercise will see 870 Royal Canadian Navy and Spanish personnel working side by side. Rotations of approximately 30 RCN personnel will embark SPS Patiño and understudy procedures, familiarize themselves with equipment and participate in replenishment at sea activities.