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Royal Australian Navy

The planning of HMAS Stirling began in 1969 after the tabling of a feasibility study into the use of Garden Island — Western Australia as a naval base. The 4.2 kilometre causeway linking the island with the mainland was completed in June, 1973. Construction of HMAS Stirling's wharves and workshops began in early 1973 and accommodation in 1975 with HMAS Stirling being formally commissioned on July 28, 1978

Since its commissioning HMAS Stirling has expanded enormously within its existing boundaries and has seen buildings such as the Submarine Escape Training Facility (SETF) — one of only six in the world and the only one constructed in the southern hemisphere.

In addition to the 314 metre long two-level "Diamantina Pier" and the redeveloped small ships harbour increasing the wharf and berthing space available to surface ships and submarines, other additions have been the helicopter support facility and extensions to the RAN Submarine Training Systems Centre (STSC), the Training Centre-West complex and a trials, research and support facility.

By year 2000 it was planned to have half of the Australian Fleet home-ported at Fleet Base West, including all six of the new Collins-class Submarines.

HMAS Stirling — Submarine Training and Systems Centre (STSC)


On October 14, 1999 Naval Training Command hosted a "Professional Training Conference" at the Submarine Training and Systems Centre, HMAS STIRLING. The purpose of the conference was to discuss current issues in the Vocational Education and Training Sector and was opened by the Hon. Graham Kierath MLA Minister for Planning; Employment and Training; Heritage, and attended by senior representatives from industry, West Australian Department of Training, and Defence personnel.

Commander John M. H. Taubman RAN — Director, STSC invited Neil Ringshaw to be the Keynote Speaker at the conference to address the legal ramifications of training.


Neil prepared a paper entitled "Training — The Legal Ramifications" which was distributed to all attendees, and delivered the presentation utilising multi media. A short question time followed to address specific questions relating to legislative requirements.

HMAS Stirling — Submarine Escape Training Facility (SETF)


The Submarine Escape Training Facility required an Occupational Safety and Health Risk Analysis (OSHRA) in relation to the existing pressurised escape training conducted at SETF, including but not limited to people, plant and equipment.


Ringshaw Consulting undertook the OSHRA process by:

  1. reviewing current RAN OSH Assessments on Pressurised Submarine Escape Training and associated documents;
  2. reviewing existing SETF training modules documentation and standing orders; and
  3. conducting an independent Risk Assessment of the SETF including interviewing and observing relevant personnel.
  4. Perform Gap Analysis (current vs required) of skills.
  5. Facilitate a rewrite of CBT Training to reflect SOPs (as required).
  6. Perform a competency audit of process and people.
  7. Provide a final report to the SETF Commander.

The outcome of the OSHRA resulted in Ringshaw Consulting conducting Job Safety Analysis Training for the SETF personnel and facilitating the Job Safety Analysis on current practices and the subsequent development/upgrade of Safe/Standard Operating Procedures.

Once that process had been completed, steps 4 to 7 (above) were implemented.

Naval Training Command — HMAS Penguin Sydney NSW


As a consequence of the "Professional Training Conference" at the STSC, HMAS Stirling. The Naval Training Command requested Neil Ringshaw to present a modified version of "Training — The Legal Ramifications" to Naval Command Senior Staff at HMAS Penguin Sydney NSW.


Neil modified the presentation material to suit the time frame available for the delivery of the required information, flew to Sydney and delivered the presentation.

A number of issues were identified as a result of the material presented, questions raised were answered and recommendations given to Naval Command senior staff to help solve some of the issues.

Submarine Air Purification Unit (APU)


LCDR Mike Phillips, RAN Facilities and Materials Support Manager, Undersea Warfare Systems Branch Project Group Russell Offices (R2-4-C060) Canberra, ACT requested Ringshaw Consulting to conduct an Occupational Health and Safety Assessment on an Air Purification Unit (APU) situated in the Static Display area STSC HMAS Stirling to identify safety and health hazards associated with the installation and commissioning of the APU; and make recommendations for the elimination or reduction of such hazards to the minimum level. This was to be followed by an Audit of the initial APU training content and delivery.


Ringshaw Consulting engaged with the appropriate stake holders to scope the project and identify additional resources required to complete the project.

To ensure integrity of the OSHA Neil consulted with and involved one of our associates in the process — Mr. Clive Stokes C Eng, F I Chem E, FIE Aust, CP Eng, Bsc, Grad Dip Admin. MAIRM. Clive conducted a series of assessments in conjunction with the stake holders on site and consulted with Neil to discuss the outcome of the assessments. A series of solutions were recommended to the appropriate naval personnel.

All of the recommendations were endorsed and implemented.

STSC Staff Training


Design, develop and deliver of a series of half day training programs for staff at STSC in the legal ramifications of training with focus on statute and common law duty of care.


Ringshaw Consulting designed and developed the appropriate training modules and delivered the training as required.