At 0320 a RAN Sea King helicopter winched onboard three injured crewmen from the badly damaged yacht SWORD OF ORION, during the 1998 Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.
At the same time a second Sea King was searching for the yacht WINSTON CHURCHILL, using her night vision capability, (the yacht had actually sunk, but at 2130 that evening a liferaft with two of her crew in it was spotted by another Sea King helicopter, and the men were winched to safety).
In both cases the aircrewman of the Sea King helicopters were required to enter the water to affect the rescue.
At 0400 HMAS NEWSCASTLE, (guided missile frigate), sailed from Sydney to also join the search for missing and damaged yachts. Subsequently the aircrewmen of both helicopters, (PO B.J. Lee and PO B.S. Pashley), were awarded the Bravery Medal. Group Citations for Bravery were also awarded to three RAN Sea King Helicopter crews.