PUBLISHED ON: 30 January 2020


Pakenham, Victoria, Australia  –  During the unprecedented 2019-2020 bushfires that engulfed Australia, rapid response was essential. The Australian Defence Force (ADF) had been working with Emergency Management Australia to assist with firefighting efforts in New South Wales, Queensland, Western Australia, Victoria and South Australia. As flames ravaged vast swathes of the country, HMAS Adelaide had less than 72 hours notice for sea and had to be made ready in less than 48 hours to join the bushfire assistance efforts.

A group of civilian contractors including Shadbolt Group is proud to have been a part of this critical response, contributing directly to Operation Bushfire Assist 19-20 to provide technical expertise and navy sustainment engineering support for the Navy’s biggest ship.

Five civilian contractors seamlessly worked with the ship’s engineering department, ensuring its smooth operation before and after departing Sydney. John Grey, Scott Reid, and Farokh Banihashemi, three of Shadbolt Group’s skilled technicians, were among those who readily embarked on the mission. Their expertise was put to work: from providing invaluable support to quality support, repairs and planned maintenance of equipment, they provided much appreciated collaboration with the ship’s engineering personnel.

“Our work requires us to work closely with the crew, sharing skills and contributing to the high availability of electrical and engineering equipment on the ship.” said John Grey, reflecting on the collaborative spirit that fueled the mission’s success.

“This is a great ship to work on and we’re fortunate to be able to help out at this time. Adelaide has a great crew, terrific accommodation and excellent food.” added Grey.

Their contribution was met with resounding appreciation and praise from the Commander Engineer of HMAS Adelaide. “Both GE and Shadbolt have provided professional, reliable and consistent quality technical support. They have integrated well within the Marine Engineering Department and they are treated as part of the team in the ship.” said CMDR Doherty.

But beyond technical excellence, the deployment resonated with a deeper purpose and unwavering commitment to provide valuable aid to communities impacted by bushfires across Australia. Our collaboration and dedication to technical excellence demonstrate how industry expertise can play a vital role in moments that require skill, precision, and agility. We are proud to have stood alongside our fellow Australians in this fight against the bushfires.


HMAS Adelaide loads supplies and departs Sydney, Garden Island in Sydney on January 04, 2020. Picture: Gaye Gerard
HMAS Adelaide loads supplies and departs Sydney, Garden Island in Sydney on January 04, 2020. Picture: Gaye Gerard (Source:


HMAS Adelaide, Australia’s largest Navy ship, had to be quickly deployed to assist bushfire efforts and acted as a floating hospital and supply vessel carrying 300 tonnes of supplies.

About Shadbolt Group

Shadbolt Group, a leading engineering and technical services provider with multiple facilities across Australia, has over 40 years of trusted expertise and a long-standing commitment to serving Australia’s defense, marine, and critical infrastructure sectors. With a strong track record of delivering specialized support, collaborative partnerships, and unwavering dedication, our skilled technicians and award-winning personnel stand ready to tackle immense challenges and ensure smooth operations.

Whether you require specialised maintenance, comprehensive engineering solutions, or a partner that shares your values and dedication, look no further than Shadbolt Group. We’re a team of problem solvers, collaborators, and above all, Australians, committed to shaping a brighter future for the nation.