Incorrect media reporting
19 December 2019
The article published in the Australian today, Thursday 19 December 2019, is misleading and incorrect.
Aside from entirely misinformed comments regarding the Future Submarine Program, I am particularly disappointed with the statement that our sailors are reluctant to sail in the Collins class submarine.
This statement is completely false and blatantly misrepresents the world-class capability of the Collins class, the professionalism of our submariners, and the expertise of Australian industry.
Today, the Collins class is consistently performing above international benchmarks for availability, it has been maintained to the highest of standards and routinely upgraded, and remains a highly capable submarine.
Our Collins fleet deploys regularly at long ranges from its home port in Western Australia. In 2019 alone, this amounted to five deployments often involving two or more submarines simultaneously.
This level of operational activity has also been reflected in the substantial growth of submariners over recent years. In 2013, there was less than 500 personnel in the submarine force, and today there are over 800 of our Navy People who confidently serve in our Collins class submarines. They operate our submarine fleet in the most complex of operations, and are held in the highest regard by our closest allies.
Collins is a highly effective submarine and we have an outstanding submarine force, and one that all Australians should be proud of.
Vice Admiral Michael Noonan, AO, RAN
Chief of Navy Australia