Expeditioners prepare for life on the ice

Expeditioner training

Video transcript

>> LUKE – EXPEDITIONER: I'm Luke.

>> GAVIN – EXPEDITIONER: I'm Gavin.

>> DANE – EXPEDITIONER: I'm Dane.

>> BILL – EXPEDITIONER: I'm Bill.

>> SCOTT – EXPEDITIONER: I'm Scott.

>> JOSH – EXPEDITIONER: I'm Josh.

>> ALL: And we're going to Antarctica!

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>> DAVE O’NEILL – MECHANICAL WORKSHOP MANAGER:Okay, folks. We're here today to learn how to operate the Hägglunds in all sorts of terrain. What we're going to do now is immerse the machine in water which is sort of an unnatural act, I would say, to drive a passenger vehicle into a lake.

[music]

>> EXPEDITIONER: Land ahoy!

[music]

[end transcript]

A new batch of Antarctic expeditioners are descending on the Australian Antarctic Division headquarters in Tasmania to prepare for their new life on the ice.

Each year the Division trains about 160 expeditioners before they head to Australia’s Casey, Davis and Mawson research stations in Antarctica or to sub-Antarctic Macquarie Island.

The expeditioners spend between 6 and 18 months down south, undertaking a range of roles from chefs to trades people, weather observers and doctors.

The training in Kingston before they leave, prepares expeditioners for both the technical work they will undertake and the various community activities they’ll need to complete.

It takes up to three months for wintering expeditioners to finish their training and includes search and rescue, wilderness first aid and lay surgical training to assist the station doctor in the event of an emergency.

Expeditioners going to the continent also learn how to use a tracked over snow vehicle, called a Hägglunds.

Last week the mechanics heading into Casey and Davis stations were put through their paces driving the Hägglunds on a nearby farm… strap yourselves in!