Maritime Casualty Officers workshop and training

Thursday 27 April 2017
AMSA Response hosted a Maritime Casualty Officers (MCO) workshop and training sessions in NSW between 28 February and 3 March.
Maritime Casualty Officers workshop participants on board the MV Attikos

The aim of the workshop and training sessions was to prepare our MCOs theoretically and practically for potential deployment on board a maritime casualty. Nine of the eleven port marine surveyors designated as MCOs from each level 2 emergency towage capability regions participated. AMSA organised, coordinated and participated in training with MCOs.

The workshop consisted of various presentations, information sharing sessions and group exercises. Fire Rescue NSW outlined their Hazardous Noxious Substance response capability.

The first day of the training sessions was held in the Westpac Lifesaver base in La Perouse. The session began with a theory segment about working safely around aircraft. A practical segment covered static winching from a helicopter simulator and dynamic winching from an operating aircraft, including hover entry and exit.

The second day of training was held in Des Renford Leisure Centre in Maroubra. This was a training session focused on Helicopter Underwater Escape Training and Emergency Breathing Systems.

The third and final day of training was held in Wollongong. It began by airlifting a group of MCOs from Wollongong heliport to the simulated casualty vessel MV Attikos sitting just off the Port Kembla Anchorage. MCOs were then winched down on board the MV Attikos. They witnessed a search and rescue demonstration that included life raft deployment from the helicopter before being airlifted from the vessel to the Wollongong heliport.

AMSA expressed its appreciation to the owner, master and the crew of MV Attikos for providing access and hospitality on board the vessel. AMSA also expressed its thanks to Westpac Lifesaver Rescue, and Risk, Response + Rescue for providing the training and related support.

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