FRANK ASAELI of PNGPCL
LIEUTENANT Sam Woolrych, navigator of the Australian Navy ship HMAS Kanimbla, has praised PNG Ports Corporation Ltd for its port services in Port Moresby.
When asked what he thought of the port services being provided, Lt Woolrych said PNGPCL had been “really helpful”.
“It was a great help, we had a really nice smooth berthing,” Lt Woolrych said about pilotage services provided by PNGPCL at its Port Moresby port.
HMAS Kanimbla arrived in Port Moresby on Aug 24 and will be leaving PNG waters on Sept 19 after returning from Lae, Morobe province.
This is the first time the ship has been in PNG.
“We are doing a military exercise with the PNG Defence Force,” Lt Woolrych said.
“We brought over the Australian army guys and they are now out at the Goldie Barracks at the Goldie River.
“We are here as a support platform for that.
“We’re basically a transport ship.”
HMAS Kanimbla was built for the United States Navy as USS Saginaw and was commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy in August 1994.
It has undergone extensive modifications for its new role as a helicopter capable amphibious transport ship.
Kanimbla’s primary role is to transport land and support a force of up to 450 personnel, their vehicles and equipment.
The ship is fitted with a helicopter hangar capable of supporting up to four Army Black Hawk or three Navy Sea King helicopters.
Army landing craft can also be carried on the forward flight deck to provide ship-to-shore transport.
Accessed through a stern door, storage space is available on the vehicle deck for Army vehicles and other large items of equipment.
The ship has operations and planning rooms and a comprehensive array of communications equipment to support joint operations.
HMAS Kanimbla is also fitted with the largest and most-comprehensive medical facilities in the fleet, with a 40-bed hospital incorporating full surgical and recovery facilities and is the second RAN ship to carry the name.
The first Kanimbla was a fast cruiser requisitioned and converted to an armed merchant cruiser for the Royal Navy during World War II.
In 1943, it was further converted to an infantry landing ship and commissioned into the RAN.