A busy week on station as the full summer crew have arrived and finalised inductions. They're now ready to get on with the job and operations are ramping up at Casey.
First priority was ensuring the search and rescue (SAR), fire, and lay surgical assistant teams were all ready to go. And, what better way than through a station–wide exercise on Saturday afternoon.
Paula, our senior field training officer, led the SAR team to great effect with our ‘lost’ expeditioner found quickly up on Reeves Hill. Our wintering doctor, Elise, was kind enough to volunteer her services as the lost expeditioner / potential patient (victim); she was very complimentary of the stretcher carriers’ skills.
With the emergency response teams assessed as operational we're now signed off and ready to send teams out into the field. This allowed our field training officers to commence their training program with the first survival training of the season kicking off over Monday and Tuesday. (See Luke’s story for an insider view of what that entailed.)
Our inter–continental flights have continued with the first ADF C-17 of the season arriving on Sunday, bringing in some much awaited and most exciting fresh food (especially the 10kg of coffee beans which has temporarily averted the ‘Casey Coffee Crisis of 2017').
The hard work of the AGSO’s since their arrival has meant the Casey skiway was prepared in time for our first intra–continental flight of the season. The Basler from Zhongshan, the Chinese station, arrived yesterday to collect their new station leader who will be arriving on tomorrow’s C-17 flight.
The infrastructure and mechanical crew have hit the ground running, finalising inductions and then staring to work through the never–ending list of jobs.
The weather has been remarkably good with clear blue skies, light winds and relatively warm temperatures (up to a balmy −5°C). So when off work we've seen swarms of new expeditioners out and about visiting the wharf area and Reeves Hill; sometime doing a lap between the two to get some much needed exercise (they're already feeling the effects of the great food, especially the irresistible smoko snacks!). The only problem with the warm weather is the loss of the sea ice, over just two days we've seen it progressively disappearing from Newcomb Bay, out the front of the station. What was flat white as far as the eye could see when we arrived two weeks ago, is now open water out in the bay and further out to sea. Summer is coming.
So really, the station has been a hive of activity, which isn’t going to slow its pace for the next four months… The excitement of summer at Casey!