Gippsland is expected to gain a new legion of admirers when a soon-to-be-built Royal Australian Navy patrol vessel takes our region’s name.
HMAS Gippsland is one of 12 offshore patrol vessels to be built and will be involved in maritime border patrols, fisheries patrols and humanitarian and disaster relief.
Minister for Defence Personnel and Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester said the vessel’s name would be a great source of pride for many people.
“It is a great honour for the name of our region to be borne by one of the ships from a new generation of offshore patrol vessels,” Mr Chester said.
“There will be many people who know and love Gippsland who will feel immense pride to see the name of our wonderful region on a naval vessel in the service of our country.
“Many of us witnessed the professionalism and compassion of our defence force personnel during the summer bushfires, including the evacuation of Mallacoota, and are touched that there will be a new, lasting connection between the Royal Australian Navy and our region.”
HMAS Gippsland will be one of 12 new offshore patrol vessels that will be part of the new Arafura class vessels. They will replace the Armidale Class and Cape Class patrol boats.
The Arafura class vessels are 80 metres long, have a maximum speed of more than 20 knots and a range of 4000 nautical miles. They require a crew of 40 and can accommodate 60 personnel.
The first six Arafura class vessels have been named after Australian maritime regions and recognise the significance of these regions to Australia’s security and prosperity. The other names chosen are HMAS Arafura, HMAS Eyre, HMAS Pilbara, HMAS Illawarra and HMAS Carpentaria.