First visit to Tauranga for Offshore patrol vessel

HMNZS WELLINGTON'S homecoming Sept 2010

24 May 2011

HMNZS WELLINGTON will be conducting the first ever visit by an Offshore Patrol Vessel to Tauranga this week.

The Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Commander Simon Griffiths warmly invites the public of the Bay of Plenty region to tour the ship and meet the members of the crew.

WELLINGTON will be open to the public from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm on Sunday 29 May 2011 at No1 Wharf, Mt Maunganui, Ports of Tauranga.  The ship will arrive in Tauranga on Friday, 27 May 2011 and depart Monday, 30 May 2011.


Pennant Number - P55
International Call sign - ZMFS
|Motto - Suprema ut oim (Supreme as ever)

HMNZS WELLINGTON is the second of the Offshore Patrol Vessels to be accepted by the Royal New Zealand Navy as part of Project Protector. WELLINGTON was accepted into the fleet by the Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral Tony Parr in May 2010, in Melbourne. She is the last of the Project Protector series of ships delivered following the Multi-Role Vessel HMNZS CANTERBURY, the four inshore patrol vessels and the Offshore Patrol Vessel HMNZS OTAGO.

The Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs), OTAGO and WELLINGTON, deliver substantial new capability to the Royal New Zealand Navy.  The ships can go further offshore, stay at sea longer, and conduct more challenging operations than the Inshore Patrol Vessels, and will enable the RNZN to conduct patrol and surveillance operations around New Zealand, the southern ocean and into the Pacific.

The OPV’s are capable of many roles including maritime patrol, surveillance and response.  They have the ability to conduct helicopter operations using a Seasprite SH2G helicopter, boarding operations using the ships Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats, or Military Support Operations with embarked forces.

The OPV’s have strengthened hulls which enable them to enter southern waters where ice may be encountered.  They are not designed as ice-breakers or to enter Antarctic ice-packs, but have the range and capability to undertake patrols in the southern ocean where ice may be encountered.

The ships are highly automated and operate with a core crew of 35, plus 10 flight crew to operate a helicopter.  The ships power and control systems are fully computerised.

Displacement:                1,900 tonnes
Length Overall:                85 metres
Beam:                               14 metres  
Range:                              6000 nautical miles
Speed:                              Maximum continuous 22 knots 

Core ships company :      35
Flight personnel:               10
Government agencies:     4
Additional personnel:       30
Total:                                    79
Armament:             One 25mm Bushmaster Naval gun and two .50 calibre machine guns


The Offshore Patrol Vessels operate throughout New Zealand’s 200 mile Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), the southern ocean and the Pacific. They carry out a range of roles including patrolling, surveillance, search and rescue, humanitarian assistance, disaster relief, support to peacekeeping operations and sea training for the Navy. 

For more information please contact Lieutenant Commander Evan Dines on 029 572 8090.

This page was last reviewed on 24 May 2011.