ADF officers save man from drowning in Solomon Islands
16 July 2015
Honiara, Solomon Islands (July 2015). The quick reactions of Australian and US personnel on Pacific Partnership have saved the life of a drowning man on 10 July 15.
After arriving in port earlier in the day, on Military Sealift Command joint high speed vessel USNS Millinocket (JHSV 3), three civilian mariners Frederick Beck, Daniel Claycomb and Shannon Alves noticed a semi-conscious man floating in the water who was unable to keep himself afloat.
Seeing the unfolding event on the pier, Australian Army Lieutenant Colonel Rodney Petersen and Australian Navy Lieutenant Commander (LCDR) Alison Zilko, quickly ran to the pier and with help from the ship's crew successfully pulled the man from the water.
LCDR Zilko began administering first aid treatment and said the man seemed close to death before they were able to successfully retrieve, stabilise and send him to hospital for monitoring.
"Lieutenant Colonel Petersen and myself, with the aid of two USNS Milinockett Ship's Company pulled a gentleman out of the water and revived him after a near drowning dockside," LCDR Zilko said.
"This man was very lucky to have been noticed by the Pacific Partnership 2015 personnel and ship's crew, he was very lucky not to have drowned."
Mr Beck said the result could have been much worse.
"We saw some splashing in the water after one of the ferry boats had went by. We immediately alerted the medics and attempted to keep him afloat," Mr Beck said.
The crew quickly threw him a life buoy to try to pull him from the water.
"We had to drag him on the buoy around the ship to the pier," Mr Claycomb said.
"If it were not for us throwing that out there, he would have drowned."
Now in its 10th iteration, Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multilateral humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Asia-Pacific Region.
While training for crisis conditions, Pacific Partnership missions have provided medical care to about 270,000 patients and veterinary services to more than 38,000 animals.
Additionally, the mission has provided critical infrastructure developments to host nations through the completion of more than 180 engineering projects.