SAN DIEGO, California -- Mine Countermeasures Squadron Three and Mine Countermeasures Division Three One, based at Naval Base Point Loma, are leading a coalition of international maritime forces throughout the month of July conducting Mine Countermeasure (MCM) operations as part of the Southern California component of Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise 2018.
This Task Group consists of airborne, surface, and underwater assets designed to detect and neutralize potential sea mine threats. Teams from New Zealand and Netherlands deploy unmanned underwater vehicles to search for mines using sonar technology. Explosive Ordnance Disposal dive teams from Japan and New Zealand then visually inspect and defuse the detected mines. U.S and Canadian ships USS Ardent (MCM 12) and HMCS Whitehorse (MM-705) provide mine hunting and removal capability and diving support. MH-53E Sea Dragon helicopters from Helicopter Mine-Countermeasures Squadron 14 (HM 14), based in Norfolk, VA, provide mine detection capabilities and airborne mine sweeping capability.
This deep coalition of allies and international partners shows the commitment and proven capabilities of each navy. RIMPAC 2018 provides a realistic training opportunity to develop trusting and flexible relationships with our partners in order to accomplish our shared goal of safe and free waterways around the globe.