Aerial view of HMNZS WELLINGTON at sea
24 April 2014
Driving a high-powered jet-boat and participating in damage-control exercises are some of the activities planned for Mayor of Wellington Celia Wade-Brown when she embarks on Offshore Patrol Vessel HMNZS WELLINGTON this Saturday for a two day passage to Auckland.
The Commanding Officer of WELLINGTON, Lieutenant Commander (LTCDR) Phil Rowe, said he was delighted to have the Mayor onboard.
“The ship is proud of our links to the City and region of Wellington, and this is an opportunity to show the Mayor the capabilities of the ship and her personnel.
“We plan to have the Mayor drive our fast Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats, take part in a fire-fighting exercise with our damage control crews and experience life onboard a Navy vessel at sea.”
Mayor Celia Wade-Brown said embarking on WELLINGTON was an awesome opportunity to see more of New Zealand’s coastline and to understand the role of the Navy, particularly the capabilities of WELLINGTON and her crew.
“I am proud of New Zealand Defence Force’s peacekeeping roles, especially in the Pacific. Our Exclusive Economic Zone covers fifteen times the area of our land mass and the Royal New Zealand Navy is critical in protecting marine species and supporting conservation.”
LTCDR Rowe said WELLINGTON, and her sister ship OTAGO, are extremely versatile and capable ships.
“Our regular work includes fishery patrols around New Zealand’s coast and the Southern Ocean, resupplying remote Department of Conservation outposts and working with nations around the Pacific on security and resource protection tasks.
“We have the ability to conduct helicopter operations using a Seasprite SH2G helicopter, boarding operations using the ship’s Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats, or Military Support Operations with embarked forces.”
In recent years WELLINGTON has undertaken long-range patrols to the Solomon Islands and Tonga, and earlier this year operated in the Sub-Antarctic oceans around Campbell, Auckland, Antipodes and Bounty Islands.