HMAS Tobruk is the RAN’s Landing Ship Heavy (LSH) and was used in the evacuation of Australian citizens from Honiara following the June 2000 coup during Operation Plumbob.
The Tobruk was also deployed in Solomon Islands waters between December 2000 and February 2001 under Operation Trek.
HMAS Tobruk, Royal Australian Navy website
“Tobruk gives the Australian Defence Force an amphibious heavy lift capability….The design includes facilities for bow and stern loading, beaching, a drive-through capacity and inter-deck transfers via ramps.
“Tobruk can transport 18 Leopard tanks, 40 Armoured Personnel Carriers or 40 Australian Light Armoured Vehicles. The Vehicle Deck has been reinforced to enable the transportation of two Landing Craft Mechanical-8 (LCM-8) on specially designed cradles. In addition, two Landing Craft Vehicular Personnel units (LCVP) are secured by davits on either side of the superstructure. The amphibious role is enhanced by forward and aft helicopter decks, which can be operated simultaneously. Helicopters can also be refuelled on both decks.
“Tobruk can accommodate up to 300 troops for extended duration. In an overloaded state, the ship can provide accommodation for up to 520 troops for short periods of time.”
Solomon Islands – operations Plumbob and Trek – RAN Ships, Veterans Affairs
“On 6 June 2000, HMAS Tobruk was en route from Bougainville to Vanuatu when the ship was directed to provide support for a possible Services Assisted Evacuation of Australian nationals from Honiara in the Solomon Islands. HMAS Tobruk took up a position to the South of Guadalcanal on the evening of 7 June and at 1100 on 8 June received the order to enter SI territorial waters and proceed to an anchorage at Point Cruz, Honiara. HMAS Tobruk sailed from Honiara at 1030 on 10 June having embarked 486 civilian evacuees for the passage to Cairns, where the ship arrived on 13 June.”