The UK’s Ministry of Defence has awarded a three-year contract extension to the Scotland-based subsea defence company to support NATO submarine rescue missions.
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As part of the $12.6 million contract, which expires in 2023, JFD will provide ongoing operational support to the NATO Submarine Rescue System (NSRS) — a collaborative project between the UK, France and Norway, established in 2008.
The NSRS is designed to ensure the safety of submarine missions by providing rescue to the three member nations, as well as allied NATO partners through signed agreements (MoUs).
In addition to providing round-the-clock ‘rescue ready’ capability, JFD will be tasked with providing expertly trained operating teams, service upgrades to the specialised rescue vehicles, and full maintenance.
Rescue operations may involve sending specialised vehicles to collect submariners after receiving a distress signal, before an expert operations team is deployed to slowly decompress the submariners and return them safely above the sea.
“The safety of our personnel is of the utmost importance and I am pleased we have extended our submarine rescue capability contract with JFD, which will continue to support jobs in Scotland,” UK Defence Minister Jeremy Quin said.
“This contract extension also represents our dedication to the NATO Submarine Rescue System and underpins our continued commitment to ensuring NATO submarine operations remain as safe as possible.”
Danny Gray, managing director of JFD, welcomed the contract extension, which he said has come after five years of work to build strong relationships with the UK MoD and its NATO partners.
“The extension reflects the MoD’s confidence in our ability to keep submariners safe, as well as the diligence with which we delivered the initial agreement,” he said.
“Our heritage is built on world-class safety and we are pleased our team continues to impress with their extensive knowledge, as well as their unwavering commitment to the highest possible standards of equipment maintenance, operational delivery and training.”
Gray concluded, “We look forward to continuing our work with the NSRS Authority and ensuring we are constantly upgrading processes, equipment and training to exceed market standards.”
Earlier this year, JFD, which also operates out of Perth, Australia, announced it will continue to supply its submarine rescue system to the Royal Australian Navy for at least the next four years as part of a $70 million contract extension.
JFD Australia’s contract extension is expected to create at least four full-time defence industry jobs, taking the total the number of new positions to 10.
The extension is also expected to involve more local West Australian industry, particularly in the specialist area of operating the system’s new hyperbaric treatment chambers.