Helicopters from three squadrons from HMAS Albatross are being used in the NSW bushfire efforts.
MH-60R Seahawk helicopters from 816 Squadron, MRH-90 helicopter from 808 Squadron and EC-135 helicopter from 723 Squadron are all playing roles in the efforts on the North Coast.
Defence Industry is working hand-in-hand with the RAN to support firefighting efforts during one of the most dangerous bushfire weeks the nation has ever seen.
Two qualified flying instructors from 723 Squadron based at HMAS Albatross delivered an EC-135 helicopter to RAAF Base Williamtown on Wednesday.
James Scott and Daniel Mearns work for Boeing Defence Australia delivering joint helicopter training to navy and army aircrew, normally based at HMAS Albatross.
"We both readily volunteered to support the bushfire operations and jumped at the opportunity to fly the EC-135 helicopter up to Newcastle," Mr Scott said.
"Our role is to provide seamless maintenance and aircrew support to the navy.
"When we were developing the flight plan for the trip there were a number of spot fires between Nowra and Newcastle but once we were in the air the wind had blown most of the smoke haze away."
The EC-135 helicopter was immediately put to task conducting fire assessments around the Coffs Harbour district throughout the day.
Executive Officer 723 Squadron, Lieutenant Commander Gavin Johnston explained how the squadron delivers a significant capability for rotary wing aircrew training in Australia.
"723 Squadron is the home of the Joint Helicopter School which provides basic helicopter training for navy and army's next generation of helicopter crews," LCDR Johnston said.
"Taking part in operations such as the firefighting efforts in NSW give our newly qualified crews an opportunity to consolidate the skills and knowledge that they have gained during training."
816 Squadron enhances RFS air attack capability
Navy's MH-60R Seahawk helicopters' superior Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) cameras and sensors have been working throughout the nights to support firefighting efforts across the state.
Each night, soon after dusk, the aircrew from 816 Squadron at HMAS Albatross are joined by RFS specialists flying over fire grounds to assess and map current fire movements.
The two aircraft have been flying from 7pm each night until 5am the next morning.
RFS Air Attack Supervisors Peter Sergeant from Cameron Park Brigade, near Newcastle and Jason Conn from Orana District, near Dubbo recently joined 816 Squadron aircrew for night flying operations.
"We coordinate aircraft movements over the fire ground in consultation with the ground crews," Mr Sergeant said.
"The Defence technology allows us to observe the fire at night and map the fire spread, a capability not normally available to RFS."
The MH-60R, affectionately known as the Romeo, is the navy's next generation submarine hunter and anti-surface warfare helicopter but readily adapts to support a variety of missions including search and rescue, utility and humanitarian aid and disaster relief operations.
Earlier in the week a MRH-90 helicopter from 808 Squadron at Albatross spent the first day of catastrophic fire conditions on search and rescue missions to support firefighting efforts around Kempsey on the Mid North Coast.
The Australian Defence Force (ADF) is working with Emergency Management Australia to support the firefighting efforts in NSW and Queensland.