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Update on NZDF support to Tonga: 27 January 2022

A Royal New Zealand Air Force C-130 Hercules has today delivered more essential supplies to assist relief efforts in Tonga following the eruption and tsunami this month.

27 January, 2022

The flight today was New Zealand’s third by a Hercules carrying humanitarian aid and disaster relief supplies.

The aircraft left RNZAF Base Auckland with food, water purifiers, medical supplies, chainsaw sets, and communications equipment including satellite phones, handheld marine radios and VHF radios.

Royal New Zealand Navy ship HMNZS Canterbury arrived in Tonga yesterday and, in a contactless delivery, has offloaded stores including milk powder, tarpaulins and water pumps. Personnel on board the ship remain ready to assist with relief efforts as directed by Tongan authorities.

HMNZS Canterbury’s arrival in Tonga means Navy ship HMNZS Aotearoa can depart tonight, after about a week in Tonga, so the ship can continue with a planned mission to Antarctica next month.

HMNZS Aotearoa took bulk water supplies to Tonga and has been producing safe drinking water, providing more than 415,000 litres of fresh drinking water for Tongan communities.

Replenishment at sea with HMNZS Aotearoa and HMS Spey

HMNZS Aotearoa has also been providing fuel to Tongan Navy vessels involved in distributing aid and fresh water, as well as refuelling ships from nations such as Australia, the US, France and UK assisting with relief efforts. Today, HMNZS Aotearoa refuelled the Royal Navy’s HMS Spey. 

HMNZS Wellington has divers and hydrographers on board who have been inspecting and surveying damage to infrastructure, ports of entry and harbours, ensuring ships, including those of partner nations, can safely enter to deliver aid to Tonga.

HMNZS Wellington is transiting to Niuatopatapu to conduct harbour surveys and relocate a navigational mark that moved in the natural disaster.

View the latest updates on the NZDF Tonga Response page here.