Canada’s West Coast military joins advanced war-fighting event

Rim of the Pacific world's largest multinational biennial exercise

Submarine HMCS Victoria arrives at Pearl Harbor

CFB Esquimalt personnel are among more than 1,400 Canadian military members in Hawaii participating in the Rim of the Pacific biennial exercise.

The mass training manoeuvre involves 22 nations, 25,000 personnel, more than 42 ships, six submarines and more than 200 aircraft.

It is designed to put militaries from Pacific Rim nations through advanced warfare scenarios, allowing them to strengthen their ties and their ability to respond to evolving situations, in a region considered critical to the global supply chain.

Canada, including the West Coast navy, will experience a number of firsts during this year’s exercise, the world’s largest of its kind.

CFB Esquimalt submarine HMCS Victoria arrived in Hawaiian waters Tuesday and is gearing up to reach additional milestones on the road to becoming fully operational.

It is the first Victoria-class submarine to take part in RIMPAC, which began in 1971.

Victoria, among several other vessels, will get the chance fire live ammunition at surplus vessels.

“We want to expose as many (personnel) to the actual process of a live firing. That is really a huge team- and confidence-building exercise into the technical readiness and accuracy of the team,” said navy Capt. Luc Cassivi, Maritime Forces Pacific chief of operations. “It’s not an opportunity that presents itself all the time.”

In another RIMPAC first, Canada’s navy brass are serving important leadership roles.

Commodore Peter Ellis, fleet commander of Maritime Forces Pacific, is commanding an amphibious task force of 12 ships from seven countries, and 1,700 soldiers, including 150 from Canada.

Ellis will plan and direct operations that run the gamut, from providing humanitarian assistance and conducting evacuations from combat or disaster zones, to suppressing terrorist and piracy activities.

“It’s not just a first in terms of Canadians, it’s also a first in terms of the Americans allowing non-Americans to exercise those roles,” Ellis told the News via phone from Pearl Harbour in Honolulu. “It’s an incredible milestone, and I think it’s a great compliment to us that we’ve been offered those roles.”

emccracken@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Residents say Monday’s fatal crash in Saanich wasn’t unexpected

Speed has long been a concern for neighbours in the Cumberland and Union roads area

UVic hosts community gathering following death of two students

Campus community invited to reflect, support one another

Victoria police arrest man at gunpoint for allegedly assaulting two people with a knife

The man was arrested Monday night after in incident in the 900-block of Pandora Ave.

Judge quashes Victoria man’s appeal of 90 day weekend sentence for trafficking meth

Godofredo Narboneta Ruiz was the owner, driver of vehicle used to transport the drugs

Reynolds Secondary principal pens letter to parents after student involved in fatal crash

Various supports available to students, staff and community

WATCH: United Way #Drive4Five event launches campaign to raise $5 million

More than 80,000 lives changed last year by the United Way

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of September 17

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C. party bus company to be monitored after 40 intoxicated teens found onboard

Police received tip teens and young adults were drinking on party buses and limousines in Surrey

Rick Mercer calls out Conservative candidate in B.C. for fake meme

‘Not true. All fake. Please Stop,’ tweeted Rick Mercer in response

Bear killed in Kimberley after chasing girl, wreaking havoc on town

This particular brown-coloured bear has been the subject of many calls this summer; very food habituated, CO says

Vancouver Island man bikes through B.C. Interior for mental health, addiction awareness

Vancouver Island Resident Mat Fee is approaching the final phase of his cross-Canada bike journey to raise awareness about addiction recovery.

Boy overdosed on illicit anti-anxiety drug found on Kelowna classroom floor, RCMP say

Noah Mills, 8, ingested a pink powdery substance off his Kelowna classroom floor

BC SPCA investigating after three dogs found shot dead in Prince George ditch

The three adult dogs appeared to be well cared for before being found with gunshot wounds, BC SPCA says

Psychiatric assessment ordered for man accused in Salmon Arm church shooting

Lawyer tells court accused was diagnosed with psychosis hours after his arrest

Most Read