On 8 September the (UK) Ministry of Defence reported that RFA Mounts Bay had delivered six tonnes of emergency aid to Anguilla, the British Overseas Territory devastated by Hurricane Irma, and was due to steam to the British Virgin Islands to provide further support within hours.
The naval auxiliary has been deployed in the Caribbean since July in preparation for the hurricane season, ready to provide support at a moment’s notice. Tasked by the Royal Navy, she was the UK’s first military response to the Caribbean. The ship carries a specialist disaster relief team – drawn from the Royal Engineers and Royal Logistics Corps (see troops illustrated) – as well as heavy plant for lifting and shifting and emergency kit and shelters (illustrated) provided by the Department for International Development. Also on board are the Royal Navy’s Mobile Aviation Support Force – aviation specialists, meteorological advisors and flight deck crews.