The Royal Australian Navy has decommissioned Armidale Class Patrol Boat HMAS Wollongong (P92) at a ceremony in HMAS Cairns after 15 years of service. Commander Australian Fleet, Rear Admiral Jonathan Earley, CSC, RAN, attended the ceremony and recognised the service of the Ship’s Firm. HMAS Wollongong has protected Australia in opposition to unauthorised entry, breaches of customs, fisheries safety, and upheld immigration and medicines laws. Wollongong has served as a part of Operations AUGURY (Philippines), SOLANIA (South West Pacific) and APEC ASSIST (PNG) and the 2019 G20 Summit in Japan. Roughly 30 crew of Wollongong lately marched by means of the streets of the boat’s namesake metropolis, Wollongong within the conventional final parade earlier than decommissioning.

Commanding Officer HMAS Wollongong, Lieutenant Commander Matthew Hams, stated,”Since commissioning in 2007, HMAS Wollongong has labored alongside Border Power, Australian Fisheries and the Australian Federal Police as a part of border safety operations. Of word, HMAS Wollongong has steamed virtually a million kilometres all through its service and I commend the professionalism, dedication, and fervour of the crews who’ve served.”


Royal Australian Navy sailors, from HMAS Wollongong, are halted by New South Wales Police Chief Inspector Mick Dykes, as they move by means of the town of Wollongong, NSW, through the Freedom of Entry march. (Picture by Aircraftman Ryan Howell/Australian Authorities Division of Defence)

“HMAS Wollongong and the crews who’ve served within the vessel have made a major contribution to our nationwide curiosity. These skilled and devoted women and men have protected our nation’s borders and offshore maritime pursuits from criminal activity. Whereas as we speak’s decommissioning is a obligatory a part of renewing our fleet, additionally it is a possibility to honour the contribution made by the crews who’ve served Australia in HMAS Wollongong. Navy is transitioning to 12 new Arafura Class Offshore Patrol Vessels. These boats have better vary and endurance than our current boats. This may permit Navy to guard Australian pursuits over nice distances and in additional complicated maritime environments,” Rear Admiral Earley stated.

HMAS Wollongong (P92) was the tenth of fourteen Armidale Class Patrol Boats (ACPB) constructed for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN). She was constructed by Austal Ships at Henderson, Western Australia, as a part of a $553 million contract between the Federal Authorities and Defence Maritime Providers. The Armidale class vessels continued the legacy of service established by the RAN’s former Assault and Fremantle Class Patrol boats. The bigger, extra succesful ACPBs had been characterised by good seakeeping qualities, improved vary and endurance, in addition to internet hosting a state-of-the-art surveillance system. They contributed considerably over 20 years to myriad border safety and maritime safety operations, each in Australian waters and all through the south-west Pacific.