U.S. Navy Takes Lead in Ordnance Retrieval Mission
U.S. 7th Fleet News Release
SOUTH PACIFIC OCEAN, July 26, 2013 In coordination with the Australian Defense Force, the U.S. 7th Fleet will take the lead in the safe retrieval and disposal of four bombs which were jettisoned off the coast of Queensland, Australia, by two AV-8B Harrier aircraft in an emergency situation on July 16.
The U.S. military is aware of its professional responsibility to mitigate the environmental impact of its exercises/operations. As partners with our Australian counterparts, and particularly in the context of Exercise Talisman Saber, the U.S. military conscientiously conforms to the proper rules and protocols set forth by Australian military and civilian authorities.
In conducting the retrieval, the 7th Fleet will coordinate closely with the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and the Australian Defense Force to ensure the environment is protected with the greatest care. The U.S. military has been in close contact with the Australian Defense Force and the park authority to determine the appropriate course of action.
We are fully committed to redressing any potential adverse environmental impact in a timely manner. We will announce more detailed plans for recovery operations as they are finalized.