Partnership of the Americas Task Group 40.0 conducted Passing Exercises (PASSEX) while underway with the Brazilian Navy on April 23 during Partnership of the Americas 2007.
Within 36 hours, 18 events were completed to train the multinational task group in different warfare areas along with three Brazilian ships: BNS Independencia (F 44), BNS Bosisio (F 48) and BNS Gastao Motta (G 23).
The task group is composed of USS Pearl Harbor (LSD 52), USS Samuel B. Roberts (FFG 58), USS Mitscher (DDG 57) and Chilean Frigate CS Almirante Latorre under the tactical command of Capt. Randy Snyder, Commander Destroyer Squadron (CDS) 40.
“This is a great opportunity for United States, Chile and Brazil to work together prior to UNITAS Atlantic,” said Lt. Cmdr. Donald Voelbel, CDS 40 operations officer.
Different evolutions were accomplished during this PASSEX such as an underway replenishment (UNREP), which allowed ships to practice refueling at sea, maneuvering, drills, communications exercises and air/surface warfare tactical events.
According to Boatswain’s Mate 2nd Class (SW) Ruben Cajero, UNREP team supervisor, the maneuvering and communications between the ships were beneficial and understandood by both navies.
Two Brazilian Sky-Hawk aircraft and a Brazilian Navy fast patrol boat were also part of the training scenarios during the PASSEX.
According to Voelbel, the Photo Exercise (PHOTOEX) was an important event that brought seven ships in close vicinity maneuvering while photos were taken. This exercise gave the bridge watch standers a chance to improve their skills in tight maneuvering involving the U.S. Navy and navies of other other nations, as well the opportunity to see multiple national flags sailing together.
“It is an exciting experience to learn how other navies conduct operations,” said Gunner’s Mate (SW) Jesus Sanchez, UNREP team member. “Working and interacting with the Brazilian Navy is great.”
The PASSEX was also chance for the multinational navies to enhance relationships and is designed to improve both naval forces’ capability for coordinated and bilateral operations.
The Partnership of the Americas Task Group will be working with partner nations throughout South America to directly support the U.S. Navy’s concept of a 1,000 ship Navy, which brings together maritime forces to work toward common objectives of security and interoperability.
By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (SW) Alexia M. Riveracorrea, Destroyer Squadron 40 Public Affairs