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Navy Submarine Fleet on the Prowl off Western AUS Coast

22 November 2010

*Navy submarine fleet on the prowl off the coast of Western Australia*

The Royal Australian Navy has three Collins class submarines at sea, with HMAS /Dechaineux/ and HMAS /Collins/ sailing from their base at Fleet Base West at HMAS /Stirling/ for Anti Submarine Warfare exercises.

ASWEX is an important exercise in the Royal Australian Navy's annual calendar, bringing together frigates, replenishment ships, Navy aircraft and submarines as well as aircraft from the Royal Australian Air Force.

HMAS /Collins/ had been visiting the east coast of Australia but has returned to her home port to participate in ASWEX. /Collins/ steamed over 10,400 nautical miles around Australia, with port visits in five states and territories. She also qualified 20 new submariners and had 17 sailors complete professional development qualifications.

HMAS /Dechaineux/ has returned to duty after an incident with a civilian tug boat which damaged her propeller earlier this month.

The repairs to the propeller took only a week to complete, at the Henderson shipyard in Western Australia. The operation was coordinated by the Australian Submarine Program Office. Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Russ Crane has congratulated all involved.

"To replace a major piece of equipment as fast as this, shows how well Navy and DMO are working with our civilian contractors. The Australian Submarine Program Office only opened in February this year. They can be rightly proud of this achievement," Vice Admiral Crane said.

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HMAS /Waller/ is also at sea carrying out training after undergoing scheduled maintenance.

"Our goal has always been to have three submarines consistently ready for sea," Vice Admiral Crane said.

"This will allow us to continue training our new submariners as outlined in the Submarine Workforce Sustainability Review. It's another step closer to our goal of standing up a fourth submarine crew by the end of next year. "

ENDS

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