Indian & US navies strengthen maritime cooperation with successful salvage and explosive ordnance disposal exercise ‘Salvex’
The exercise showcased advanced warships along with highly skilled diving and EOD teams
The Indian Navy (IN) and the US Navy (USN) have successfully concluded the seventh edition of their joint Salvage and Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) exercise, SALVEX. The exercise, which ran from June 26 to July 6, was held in Kochi, marking another milestone in the strengthening of maritime cooperation between the two nations.
The two navies have engaged in joint salvage and Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) exercises since 2005. The primary objective behind these collaborative endeavours has been to foster interoperability and strengthen operational coordination between the participating forces.
In the latest iteration of the exercise, both sides showcased their commitment by deploying cutting-edge frontline warships. The Indian Navy's specialist diving support ship INS Nireekshak and the US Navy's USNS Salvor featured prominently in this year's exercise. Moreover, the exercise witnessed the active involvement of highly skilled diving and EOD teams from both nations, who contributed their expertise and knowledge to the joint undertaking.
Over the course of 11 days, diving teams from both countries shared experiences on maritime salvage and trained together in various facets of EOD operations on land and at sea. The exercise also included joint training exercises aimed at enhancing interoperability, cohesiveness, and learning from best practices in maritime salvage and EOD operations.
"The constructive engagements on operational terms enhanced the skill-sets of the diving teams in a number of diverse disciplines such as mine detection and neutralisation, wreck location and salvage," the Indian Ministry of Defence said in a statement.
These engagements have played a pivotal role in enhancing the skill-sets of the diving teams across a range of diverse disciplines. One such discipline is mine detection and neutralization, which involves the meticulous detection and safe disposal of underwater mines to ensure the safety of maritime operations. The training and practical experience gained through these engagements contribute to sharpening the expertise of the diving teams in effectively identifying and neutralizing potential mine threats.
The navy additionally highlighted the notable growth achieved by wreck location. This involves utilizing specialized equipment and techniques to locate sunken vessels or aircraft, enabling efficient recovery operations and the gathering of valuable information related to accidents, incidents, or historical events. The ability to precisely locate wrecks not only assists in understanding past events but also plays a crucial role in assessing potential environmental hazards and planning remediation efforts.
Furthermore, the diving teams have benefited from engagements focused on salvage operations. These processes entail the recovery of vessels, equipment, or other valuable assets from underwater environments. Through training and practical exercises, the teams have enhanced their proficiency in employing cutting-edge equipment and applying strategic methodologies to safely retrieve sunken objects, ensuring the preservation of valuable resources and minimizing environmental impact.