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HMS Clyde puts on a show for Army and RAF

19 October 2016
This is what it’s like to be in a warship under attack from a RAF Typhoon jet.

No, ordinarily, you wouldn’t take selfies.

HMS Clyde gave soldiers, airmen and civil servants a two-day insight into what she does around the Falklands by taking them to sea and putting on quite a show.

While personnel based at Mount Pleasant see the Army and RAF in action daily, they don’t see the work of the islands’ permanent guard ship – based five miles away at Mare Harbour when she’s not on patrol around the 700 or so islands in the British Overseas Territory.

The icing on the cake came in the form of a series of mock attacks on Clyde by air and sea

The packed visit programme started with a fascinating-yet-deadly-serious demonstration of fire and damage control (flooding) counter-measures; the consequences of an incident on board are multiplied at sea, as any support may be beyond reasonable reach.

The crew must therefore be highly trained, enabling them to deal with a diverse range of potential worst-case scenarios.

There was added spice to the man overboard exercise with the islands AAR Search and Rescue helicopter joining Clyde’s sea boat and rescue swimmer AB(Sea) Hopkins in winching accident prone Ruth the Dummy from the icy South Atlantic.

Lulls in the action were exploited by the three-dozen-strong ship’s company who explained their roles on board to visitors – from the bridge to the engine room, taking in the galley and weapons systems on the way.

The icing on the cake came in the form of a series of mock attacks on Clyde by air and sea – the latter courtesy of one of the patrol ship’s own sea boats, the former via two RAF Typhoons.

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