Townsville-based charity, YWAM Medical Ships Australia & Papua New Guinea’s (YWAM MS), have enacted their cyclone contingency plan for their training and medical ship, MV YWAM PNG, in response to tropical cyclone Kimi.
Cyclone Kimi has intensified to a category 2 and is currently moving south-southeast.
Following the direction from the Port of Townsville, the MV YWAM PNG, which has been docked at Townsville’s Marine Precinct, sailed out to sea this afternoon. The vessel will return to Townsville when safe to do so.
YWAM MS’ Managing Director, Mr Ken Mulligan, said that YWAM MS always follows the highest level of precautions in response to cyclones.
“We have prepared well for the sail, and have all the necessary personnel and provisions onboard. We will continue to follow the advice issued from relevant authorities.
“The crew are in good spirits, we look forward to having the ship safely back in port soon,” said Mr Mulligan.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the MV YWAM PNG has been in her home port of Townsville since March 2020. After receiving a formal invitation to return to Papua New Guinea (PNG) from authorities in both Australia and PNG, YWAM MS plans to re-deploy the vessel to PNG at the end of this month for the purpose of strengthening the delivery of essential healthcare in rural communities.
In collaboration with PNG’s health providers, YWAM MS has delivered over 1.8 million healthcare and training services to remote communities in PNG since 2010.