The Windy City plays host to Divex 2017
Insert by Commander Cara Pratten. Photos by
Able Seaman Tams
13 October 2017 – Sitrep 1
DIVEX is an
annual diving exercise aimed at conducting refresher
training of all South African Navy divers, which is
conducted under the auspices of the Flag Officer Fleet.
This year, it takes place from 9 to 19 October 2017 in
Port Elizabeth with Commander Wayne Combrink as Mission
Commander, supported by Chief of Staff, Lieutenant
Commander “MJ” Lebea. This exercise cannot be conducted
without the support of the South African Military Health
Service, the South African Air Force and the Army
Support Base Port Elizabeth, who provide the catering.
Diver ascends after completion of brocco-cutting on Day
of DIVEX is to conduct Air and Sea rescue training,
underwater damage control, bottom searches, capacity
building for instrument fitters and to bring the diving
capability at Naval Station Port Elizabeth to a BLOC
(benign level of capability) status. Whilst this is
underway, local secondary school learners are invited to
visit the Station to gain exposure to practical diving
and pre-selection requirements.
programme entails 53 divers split into 3 different
groups to conduct and rotate between accomplishing the
different objectives over the period.
exercise commenced on Thursday, 12 October 2017. The Air
and Sea Rescue component of the DIVEX 17 had to be
simulated due to adverse weather conditions in Port
Elizabeth. The employment of the 15 Squadron BK117 was
hampered because of high wind speeds but this did not
deter the execution of this serial as the facilitators
industriously transformed the hall at Naval Station PE
into a rescue simulation area. The procedures for
retrieval and hoisting of patients was fastidiously
overseen by Warrant Officer Class 1 Atkinson from SAS
SIMONSBERG Diving School and Staff Sergeant Els from the
Institute for Maritime Medicine Simon’s Town.
Indoor Air Sea Rescue on Day 2
Watch this space for further updates regarding the
progress of DIVEX 17!