It was a government vessel carrying out official duties.
Actually, Paul, that is not a government
boat nor a government helo. In Australia
, these duties are commonly carried out by Volunteer groups. Obviously, the pilots of the helo are licensed professionals, but are not gov employees. The operators of the "Coast Guard" rescue
vessel are amateurs and volunteers. Their training and competence vary widely; some are very very good, some are pretty hopeless. We once encountered some of the latter type in that very place... Lake Macquarie. Nearly cost us our rig...