On November 16th 2016, S.L. Fuller wrote an article for Rotor and Wing talking about how the US Navy Sea Hawks join evacuation efforts in New Zealand after there was an earthquake that hit Kalkoura on Monday morning. This earthquake had a magnitude of 7.8.
The Ministry of Defense went to evacuate tourist in the affected area by using their two NH Industries and NH90s and Navy ship. With this, they were able to evacuate about 1000 people that were trapped. This took a while since the Ministry of Defense can only transport 18 at once.
The USS Sampson was celebrating its 75th anniversary of its Navy however things changed after the earthquake. Here is what Fuller wrote.
“Onboard the ship were two Sikorsky SH-60 Sea Hawks, which will work with the NH90s. In addition, the U.S. offered a Lockheed Martin P-3 Orion to assist New Zealand’s Orion fleet with surveillance. Japan has reportedly offered assistance as well, although it is not clear what aid the country would be providing.”
The Seahawk can used for anti ship and anti submarine warfare as well as cargo lift, special operations, and drug interdiction. The rotorcraft has a range of around 380 nautical miles.