Australian Clearance Diving Team concludes explosive ordnance disposal training

28 February 2016 (Last Updated February 28th, 2016 18:30)

The Australian Navy's Clearance Diving Team One has concluded explosive ordnance disposal training at the Orchard Hills Range.

Australian Divers

The Australian Navy's Clearance Diving Team One has concluded explosive ordnance disposal training at the Orchard Hills Range.

During training, around 60 divers from the team conducted live explosive demolitions on land, as well as under water.

Petty officer clearance diver Travers Smith said: "We primarily use plastic explosives with electric and non-electric detonators, fired either manually or with remote actuated firing devices.

"All divers, no matter whether they specialise in mine counter measures, underwater damage repair or explosive ordnance disposal, need these skills."

"All divers, no matter whether they specialise in mine counter measures, underwater damage repair or explosive ordnance disposal, need these skills."

According to Smith, the training was the baseline for all clearance divers.

He added: "During the underwater serials, the guys had to place underwater explosive charges to simulate either neutralising a mine or underwater ordnance disposal in zero visibility, the dam was pitch black, it was basically mud."

The training is said to be carried out in a stepped approach.

The first phase of the training assesses the soldiers on bomb suits, explosive ordnance disposal tools and weapons.

It is followed by a two-hour testing before moving into full mission profiles that are held over a number of days.

The team plans to commence a five weeks of training in March at Pittwater which will involve full mission profiles.

The Australian Clearance Diving Team One was established on 18 March 1966 at HMAS Waterhen to support the Eastern based fleet.


Image: Australian navy divers in action during the exercise. Photo: courtesy of Royal Australian Navy.