- A.N. Other
- Ship histories and stories, Naval history
- RAN Ships
- HMAS Kanimbla II, HMAS Manoora II
- September 2013 edition of the Naval Historical Review (all rights reserved)
The two Landing Platform Amphibious class ships HMA Ships Kanimbla and Manoora were respectively paid-off in November and May 2011 and after some time alongside at Garden Island had been towed to White Bay awaiting disposal. They were first offered to the Queensland state government as wreck dives but owing to the high cost of preparing the ships for scuttling and the adverse environmental lobbying against the similar wreck dive fate of HMAS Adelaide the proposal did not proceed. Defence then announced both vessels would be broken up with an estimated scrap value of $2.5m each. Tendering for disposal began in June 2012 with a contract awarded to an American company Southern Recycling in May 2013.
On a calm but cloudy Tuesday 2 July 2013 these grand old ladies of the seas, now both well over forty years old, were towed from the harbour one at time by Svitzer tugs Giru and Woona; there was no salute or fanfare, their passing hardly noticed. With military precision they were taken to a position 6 nm off Sydney Heads where a rendezvous was made with a Taiwanese owned deep sea salvage tug Salvage Ace; interestingly she is registered in the small West Indian country of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. The two former warships were secured in tandem to Salvage Ace for the 60 day tow at 6 knots across the Pacific to Panama. Here the ships will be handed over to American tugs for the final leg of their voyage to the breakers yard in Texas. Details of the disposal contract remain confidential and the cost of the lengthy towing operation is unknown.