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HMS Medway heads to the Cayman Islands after Hurricane Ian

29 September 2022
Royal Navy patrol ship HMS Medway assisted the Cayman Islands after Hurricane Ian brushed past the British Overseas Territory.

The ship had barely finished helping islanders in the Turks and Caicos recover from the effects of Hurricane Fiona in company with tanker RFA Tideforce when she turned her attention to the damage caused by Ian. 

Thankfully the Cayman Islands – more than 600 miles west of Turks and Caicos – were only lightly impacted by the latest hurricane, but Crisis Response Troop from 24 Commando engineers landed alongside Medway’s sailors in capital George Town to show how quickly the Royal Navy is able come ashore and assist in the event of a more severe storm.

“We were monitoring weather patterns as they came through and saw Ian was developing,” said Commanding Officer of Medway, Commander Chris Hollingworth.
“Once we’d finished with Fiona we conducted a quick logistics stop to take on fuel and prepositioned ourselves to come and offer assistance.

“We’ve had some really good communications from shore. It’s clear the islands are incredibly well prepared and all we’re doing is offering a bit of extra assistance should it be required. 

“I’ve got a really competent team on board. And what we have is, essentially, it’s like a big Yellow Pages: a group of carpenters, electricians, plumbers and everybody else on standby so, anybody you need.

 “The damage from Ian has been minimal but this has been a great opportunity for my team to prove to ourselves and partners in the region that we can come in, get equipment ashore and assist as required.”

Governor Martyn Roper added: “Cayman has one of the best disaster responses in the region, but to have this additional capacity come in just gives us so much more resilience.”

The authorities put the sailors and commandos to good use, clearing fallen trees and assessing damage to jetties – with minor repairs made to one of them. 

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