The French anti-submarine frigate FNS Montcalm and the US Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS William P Lawrence, which were conducting engagement activities in the Sea of Oman, were requested for medical aid by two separate vessels, according to a CMF release.
During a routine approach and assist visit, the medical team from FNS Montcalm was transferred to a dhow to treat an Iranian crew member who had a broken leg.
Montcalm’s embarked doctor was able to assess the patient and provide advice on how to best manage the individual’s injury at sea as well as provide initial treatment.
The following day, USS William P Lawrence identified a dhow under tow and was requested to provide mechanical assistance to it. While on board assessing the engineering situation, the boarding party noticed that several Iranian crew members had a number of minor injuries.
They treated the mariners, who were suffering from infections from handling poisonous fish, eye infections and general cuts, abrasions, including a sailor with an ‘abdominal wound’.
Commodore Charles McHardi, commander of CTF150, said that the CMF regularly provides this type of assistance during maritime security patrols in the Sea of Oman, Arabian Sea, Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean.
“As mariners we all understand that life at sea can be inherently hazardous and our access to support services, such as medical treatment, that would be routine on land can be restricted,” he said.
“Our forces endeavour to improve the conditions for regional mariners however they can. Our primary focus is on improving the security environment but situations like this highlight that this is not the only role we have in this region.”
FNS Montcalm and USS William P Lawrence also provided the crew of the vessels with general assistance including the distribution of sunscreen, protective work gloves and emergency contact information for the maritime security forces operating in the area.