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RFA Sir Galahad - L3005 Landing Ship Logistic (LSL)

A new RFA Sir Galahad was built to replace the original sunk in 1982 in deep water off the Falklands as a war grave. RFA Sir Galahad was built by Swan Hunter, being launched in 1986. She was accepted into service in 1988.

On 8 June 1982 the troopships, Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) Sir Galahad and RFA Sir Tristram, were unloading troops of the Welsh Guards near Fitzroy, about 17 NM southwest of Port Stanley, when five Daggers from Grupo 6 and five Skyhawks from Grupo 5 came in over the Falkland Sound. The frigate HMS Plymouth was covering the cargo vessels when the Argentine fighters roared in, strafed it with cannon fire, and hit it with four bombs that failed to explode. The Skyhawks continued their attack and successfully put bombs into both the RFA Sir Galahad and RFA Sir Tristram. Both ships caught fire and were abandoned; 50 men were killed on RFA Sir Galahad.

With the beginning of the ground war in Iraq on 21 March 2003, the US Marines seized the port of Umm Qsar, Iraq, and then began to clear the city. This Iraqi port would become the life line for humanitarian aid for the Iraqi people. However, the port was obstacled with derelict vessels and mines blocked the entrance. The Royal Navy mine sweeper immediately began clearing the waterways of any mines while the Royal Fleet Auxiliary Sir Galahad waited offshore to deliver humanitarian aid destined for the Iraqi people.

For weeks, US and coalition Sailors and Marines from USS Ponce (LPD 15), Helicopter Mine Countermeasures Squadron (HM) 14 "Vanguards" and Commander Task Unit (CTU) 55.4.3 have been working long hours to clear the Khawar Abd Allah (KAA) river and the port of Umm Qasr, Iraq, of underwater mines. Their hard work was rewarded 28 March 2003 when British Royal Fleet Auxiliary, Landing Ship Logistic RFA Sir Galahad (L 3005) pulled safely into Umm Qasr laden with tons of humanitarian aid to feed the people of Iraq and paving the way for the steady stream of aid to come. Sir Galahad's arrival is the culmination of the hard work of all the people doing their job. Sir Galahad's cargo included more than 200 tons of water and foodstuffs, including rice, lentils, cooking oil, sugar and powdered milk. U.S. Agency for International Development officials have stated that the United States alone pledged over 610,000 tons of food.

The November 2001 signing of a 120 million Ministry of Defence contract for BAE SYSTEMS to build two Alternative Landing Ships Logistics (ALSLs) was excellent news for the Govan shipyard. The ALSLs will be named RFA Mounts Bay and RFA Cardigan Bay. They will be operated by the Royal Fleet Auxiliary. The ships were expected to enter service in 2005 and will replace the ageing landing ships RFA Sir Galahad and RFA Sir Tristram.

As of March 2007 RFA Sir Galahad was being marketed to overseas governments, and the MOD was confident that a buyer can be found. In fact, L3005 RFA Sir Galahad (2) was sold to Brazil later in 2007.

Length 140.6 Meters
Breadth 19.5 Meters
Draught 4.5 Meters
Displacement 8,751 Tonnes
Speed 17 Knots
Flight Deck 1 spot for Sea King
Vehicle Deck 1 spot for Sea King, Lynx or Chinook.
Complement 49
Armament 2 x Oerlikon 20mm guns, 2 x 7.62mm MG's

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Page last modified: 11-07-2011 03:04:55 ZULU