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  • Originally posted by DeV View Post
    If it spends 60+% of its time tied up because the crew are only available at weekends it isn’t VFM either
    How ships are deployed and worked is a matter for Command and those in DOD that oversee resources and manpower. In 1961 we had three anti-submarine / convoy air defence vessels but 90% of the time only one was at sea and even that wound down to none in the 1970's until the arrival of CMS's and P20 etc. It was once remarked in barbed jest that it would be a great Navy if we had no ships. The school would be busy training personnel, The Dockyard would be busy maintaining the Dockyard and DOD boats, Transport would be busy running people around the country, Divers would do their own thing, and the Comms Centre would keep everybody in touch, and the NSR could do their own thing. I still think we should go to sea and train people to do so worldwide as and when required. Tying up and downgrading equipment has consequences for future capability and should be ameliorated by using such assets as training units.
    Last edited by ancientmariner; 23 July 2020, 16:21.

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    • Originally posted by EUFighter View Post
      The annual reports of the number of sea days.
      The NS does about 1400 patrol days annually.

      The difference is that the NS has the capability to deploy those vessels not on patrol at short notice as when along side they are a X hours NTM.

      The NSR doesn’t have that regret of flexibility being part time volunteers. Not saying it wouldn’t be possible but the ask (And resources) aren’t there

      Comment


      • Originally posted by EUFighter View Post
        The annual reports of the number of sea days.
        Patrol days are not necessarily at sea days.
        So linky please.

        Comment


        • Originally posted by EUFighter View Post
          Is there interest in the wider public for a volunteer marine service? If the size of the Sea Scouts are anything to go by then maybe the answer is yes (currently 3,800 in the Sea Scouts). Why do I mention the Sea Scouts, well most could just join the local sailing club but they instead go into the semi-military styled scout movement. They are the potential NS members of tomorrow. But why do these organisation and others like the GAA succeed? In the main because they are local. There is no 2hr car trip to get to the local branch, it is easily reached. And just to say it again the Reserves are a leisure activity!
          There is For matches and for many for training.

          Leisure your in the wrong unit!


          While many will be prepared to travel to Haulbowline for some specialist training they will not be prepared to do that every weekend. If we look across the Irish Sea, the Brits try and have their reservists not more than an hour away from their units base. If we look at even the next two closest cities Limerick and Waterford both are well over this travelling time. And forget the hour if trying to get out of Dublin on a Friday afternoon. So if there is to be a NSR that is not limited to Cork city area then the local units need to be built up.
          It would a sea (pun semi intended) change to centralise they NSR in Haulbowline. There would be positives and negatives, but many the U.K. would be travelling long distances for training.

          Before moving on there is a need to tackle the "elephant in the room", that is "the reservist are need on-board the NS vessels to fill gaps". No, that is an abuse, the reserves are an emergency fall-back capability, they should not be seen in peacetime as a gap filler. The recruitment and retention issues in the NS need to be solved so that the NS has the numbers it needs to crew properly the fleet. That is not to say that reservist cannot have a role aboard a NS vessel but these should be temporary. It can be that for a mission like for example the recent rescue missions that a reservist with medical background could be seconded to a vessel. In the reserves there can be a great pool of skills that may be difficult to have in the NS itself. If the NS ever does get a MRV like the VARD 7-313 then this type of secondment will become increasingly necessary if the potential of such a vessel is to be fully exploited. And then there are the cases were a reservist has interest in joining the NS full time, here a couple of weeks aboard would give a good impression if that is what they want and are capable of.
          The NS is in crisis!
          22% of the fleet is tied up due to lack of personnel
          At times the remainder could only put to sea because of the availability of NSR.

          The nature of the NSR (and AR) is that deployment on board is only every short term (2-3 weeks) due to the Availability of the vast majority of members. While I’m sure (especially at the minute) the NS would like NSR to have more availability It isn’t realistic for the vast majority.

          If the premise that units need to be local is accepted then they will need their own boats, it is the boat that will attract. Such a boat needs to an all-weather boat to enable usage all year round. It would need to of a size that could be handled by a small crew but capable of carrying more. It would need to of a size that it could have a military function and if necessary be armed (fitted for but not with). That for me would be a vessel 20-30m in length, a minimum crew of 4-5 and capable of talking 8-12 addition. It would be equipped with a RIB and fitted for a RWS up to 30mm (or whatever the future second armament is of the OPVs). Be capable of 25-30kts, range of 1000nm (enough to circumnavigate the complete island), and be capable of carrying enough stores for 7 days at sea.
          in an ideal world I’d agree

          If the NSR is to survive it needs to change radically as does the whole DF. The modern world is not the same as for 30-40 years ago, it has radically changed and that change continues. To those that say VFM or not enough personnel, I say lets try something different. There needs to be a new model, one that is more a tune with the modern world. Part would be a partial modelling on the URNU, third level students have a long holiday each summer, would it be too much to have them sign up as reservists for the period of their course and as part of the deal they have to bring the majority of their summer break on a NSR vessel (naturally for some remuneration). The non-student reservists doing then 2 weeks each summer on board and all doing every second weekend outside this period. The only was to get people interested in the NS is to get them young, the NSR has a role to play here.
          It’s called money and all that would be would be showing the flag, state sponsored sea scouts.


          That is what the URNUs are, really they are designed to give students leadership (primarily) Experience and a small amount military/seamanship (secondly) in the hope that (a) they will join the RN/RNR and (b) look favourable on RN and wider MOD in their future civvy careers.



          ASM used to be just local port control etc and going on an operational NS vessel for a 2-3 week patrol would be next to unheard of. The NSR changed that.
          Last edited by DeV; 23 July 2020, 16:36.

          Comment


          • If the premise that units need to be local is accepted then they will need their own boats, it is the boat that will attract. Such a boat needs to an all-weather boat to enable usage all year round. It would need to of a size that could be handled by a small crew but capable of carrying more. It would need to of a size that it could have a military function and if necessary be armed (fitted for but not with). That for me would be a vessel 20-30m in length, a minimum crew of 4-5 and capable of talking 8-12 addition. It would be equipped with a RIB and fitted for a RWS up to 30mm (or whatever the future second armament is of the OPVs). Be capable of 25-30kts, range of 1000nm (enough to circumnavigate the complete island), and be capable of carrying enough stores for 7 days at sea.
            On that point alone the mentality of the DF being if it is capable of being classed as a military asset it won't be left out of sight and will be based in Haulbowline as secure locations for boats are far and few between out side of the Naval Base

            Before moving on there is a need to tackle the "elephant in the room", that is "the reservist are need on-board the NS vessels to fill gaps". No, that is an abuse, the reserves are an emergency fall-back capability, they should not be seen in peacetime as a gap filler. The recruitment and retention issues in the NS need to be solved so that the NS has the numbers it needs to crew properly the fleet. That is not to say that reservist cannot have a role aboard a NS vessel but these should be temporary
            Agreed but any commander who doesn't use his reserve to the best of their ability in a manning crises shouldn't be a commander. For years it was almost a stigma in the DF to be a reservist and they were not accepted at all in my time as basically they had no function on a modern naval vessel. But that changed and its is now accepted that they can have a role and that acceptance has changed the mindset of many people to a point where reservists want to go to sea.

            It shouldn't be a substitute but with current government policy...not DF policy replacements and new intake are not filling the gaps and until the manning levels at Full Time Naval levels are sorted I'm afraid the issues around reservist will always be secondary.

            Since the late 90s the elephant in the room has been employment protection for reservists as not all can operate soley at weekends.

            I'm afraid the days of large numbers of transitional reservists are long gone and only the semi professionals will remain , making it far from a hobby and anyone with their eyes wide open from about 2006 will have seen that coming.
            Covid 19 is not over ....it's still very real..Hand Hygiene, Social Distancing and Masks.. keep safe

            Comment


            • Originally posted by na grohmiti View Post
              Patrol days are not necessarily at sea days.
              So linky please.
              Point taken, if you have better figures then please share.

              Comment


              • Originally posted by EUFighter View Post
                Point taken, if you have better figures then please share.
                That's not how this works.

                Comment


                • Originally posted by na grohmiti View Post
                  That's not how this works.
                  As I said the figure for Patrol days + ATCA are from the Annual Reports, which average around 1,100 for the former and 20-30 for the latter.

                  As it has to be a public available source the figure for targets days at sea I could find openly is 220 days. That works out at 60% of the year at sea, per ship. If we look at the last year and there is no reason to think the situation will change anytime soon only 6 out of 9 ships were operational. So if those six active ship bring 220hr/yr then that mean 1,320 days for the fleet.

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by EUFighter View Post
                    As I said the figure for Patrol days + ATCA are from the Annual Reports, which average around 1,100 for the former and 20-30 for the latter.

                    As it has to be a public available source the figure for targets days at sea I could find openly is 220 days. That works out at 60% of the year at sea, per ship. If we look at the last year and there is no reason to think the situation will change anytime soon only 6 out of 9 ships were operational. So if those six active ship bring 220hr/yr then that mean 1,320 days for the fleet.
                    You are equating patrol days with days at sea, and are incorrectly presuming that if a ship is neither involved in ATCA or patrol days, it is parked up. This is not always the case. Your presumption therefore, that ships spend 60% of the year "tied up" is incorrect.

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by na grohmiti View Post
                      You are equating patrol days with days at sea, and are incorrectly presuming that if a ship is neither involved in ATCA or patrol days, it is parked up. This is not always the case. Your presumption therefore, that ships spend 60% of the year "tied up" is incorrect.
                      As I said just because they are alongside doesn’t mean that they cannot deploy at short notice

                      Patrol days are days on a sailing order (away from Haulbowline) and includes any ops or training.
                      Last edited by DeV; 24 July 2020, 13:22.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by na grohmiti View Post
                        You are equating patrol days with days at sea, and are incorrectly presuming that if a ship is neither involved in ATCA or patrol days, it is parked up. This is not always the case. Your presumption therefore, that ships spend 60% of the year "tied up" is incorrect.
                        To clarify yet again, the target of 220 days are at sea, it includes all days at sea. It matches the 26/16 day cycle and means that the target for a single ship is 60% of its time at sea.
                        However currently of the nine ships in the fleet only six are available: 60% x (6/9) = 40%.

                        So an individual ship will be at sea 60% of the time but the fleet as a whole at present only brings 40%.

                        It could be argued that one ship is in refit, but once she is finished her sister ship is due to start her refit so she (Niamh) will then be unavailable.
                        Also given that there has been at least one case (Ciara) of an active ships having their patrols delayed due to lack of crew. The situation is not likely to get better anytime soon.
                        Last edited by EUFighter; 24 July 2020, 10:46.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by hptmurphy View Post
                          On that point alone the mentality of the DF being if it is capable of being classed as a military asset it won't be left out of sight and will be based in Haulbowline as secure locations for boats are far and few between out side of the Naval Base



                          Agreed but any commander who doesn't use his reserve to the best of their ability in a manning crises shouldn't be a commander. For years it was almost a stigma in the DF to be a reservist and they were not accepted at all in my time as basically they had no function on a modern naval vessel. But that changed and its is now accepted that they can have a role and that acceptance has changed the mindset of many people to a point where reservists want to go to sea.

                          It shouldn't be a substitute but with current government policy...not DF policy replacements and new intake are not filling the gaps and until the manning levels at Full Time Naval levels are sorted I'm afraid the issues around reservist will always be secondary.

                          Since the late 90s the elephant in the room has been employment protection for reservists as not all can operate soley at weekends.

                          I'm afraid the days of large numbers of transitional reservists are long gone and only the semi professionals will remain , making it far from a hobby and anyone with their eyes wide open from about 2006 will have seen that coming.
                          I agree with you on most apart from the "semi-professionals", part-time but professional.

                          The thema of acceptance is as old as even the RNR days, and it is a great achievement that this has improved. For those in the reserves that are able to go on deployment this is vital. As you mentioned the whole employment protection needs to be improved.

                          As for the manning crisis, a good commander must make the best use of the available resources but the gap does not seem to get smaller. The NS reached a point last year where the gap fill method was not enough. Thus two ships put into reserve due to lack of crew, but the downward spiral continues. This crisis has not suddenly come upon the Services but has been a long slow decline which is now reaching a tipping point. Unless something radical changes I fear more and more ships will be put into reserve.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by EUFighter View Post
                            To clarify yet again, the target of 220 days are at sea, it includes all days at sea. It matches the 26/16 day cycle and means that the target for a single ship is 60% of its time at sea.
                            However currently of the nine ships in the fleet only six are available: 60% x (6/9) = 40%.

                            So an individual ship will be at sea 60% of the time but the fleet as a whole at present only brings 40%.

                            It could be argued that one ship is in refit, but once she is finished her sister ship is due to start her refit so she (Niamh) will then be unavailable.
                            Also given that there has been at least one case (Ciara) of an active ships having their patrols delayed due to lack of crew. The situation is not likely to get better anytime soon.
                            I see what you are doing, but did you get the 220 days at sea from a target at a time when there were 8 ships?
                            I think we are veering off the point though, needless to say the Sun reports today on expectations that a further 2 ships will soon be unable to go to sea due to crewing issues.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by na grohmiti View Post
                              I see what you are doing, but did you get the 220 days at sea from a target at a time when there were 8 ships?
                              I think we are veering off the point though, needless to say the Sun reports today on expectations that a further 2 ships will soon be unable to go to sea due to crewing issues.
                              The original 220 day figure is from the heady days before 2013, but the 26/16 day cycle is from an Oireachtas committe June 2019. The latter also works out at around the same value.

                              If the report is accurate then we are down to a 4 ship navy and even having all reservists become full time would not fill that gap.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by na grohmiti View Post
                                I see what you are doing, but did you get the 220 days at sea from a target at a time when there were 8 ships?
                                I think we are veering off the point though, needless to say the Sun reports today on expectations that a further 2 ships will soon be unable to go to sea due to crewing issues.
                                Maybe the answer is to sail on must do missions ,short of certain personnel, that can be on call from base, to do repairs as they arise-radar-radio/comms- electronics. Also give ship a deep budget to allow CO call in equipment repair experts, at away ports, even from UK/EU if Base cannot comply. The PDF need to rethink how to fill technical vacancies rather than only DE and those that apply for Tech . Training. Service Schools are the Hall Mark of balanced forces.

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