January 6, 2016 - Royal Navy patrol vessel HMS Mersey sailed from Portsmouth today for a seven-month deployment to the North Atlantic.
The ship will provide security and assurance to the UK’s overseas territories in the Caribbean and carry out counter-narcotics patrols as part of the international effort to deter drug smuggling at sea.
Her crew will also be on standby for disaster relief operations and is well trained and equipped for the role - carrying emergency relief stores, a doctor and medical team on board.
Specialist Royal Navy personnel are trained to go ashore to assess damage, identify priorities and recommend where disaster relief resource is best directed.
The ship has the capacity to make ten tonnes of fresh water per day and can embark shipping containers of aid and equipment if required.
Her Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Commander Richie Hewitt, said: “This will be a busy and exciting deployment for Mersey and her ship’s company.
“Over the past few months we’ve worked hard to train and prepare the ship and we are ready for the wide variety of tasks that may be required of us.”