Liferaft Systems Australia has secured contracts worth approximately $3 million to supply its Marine Evacuation Systems (MES) for three new vessels currently under construction for the UK Ministry of Defence.

Managing Director Mike Grainger said the contract with BAE Systems UK was to supply four of its systems for each of three Type 26 Frigates, with the first ship to be delivered in the mid 2020s.

“Each system comprises an inflatable evacuation slide connected to a 115-person inflatable liferaft,” he said.

Mr Grainger said LSA, which celebrated 25-years of operations in September, was set to increase its workforce as production increased.

“LSA currently employs 62 FTEs, with this number set to increase to approximately 75 FTEs by early next year,” he said.

“The order book is the largest we have on record. It is clearly a very good position for our business.

“All design and manufacturing work is undertaken in Hobart at our Derwent Park facility with defence contracts providing about one quarter of our total work.”

LSA has previously worked with BAE Systems on the supply of MES for two Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers for the Royal Navy.

Mr Grainger said the Australian Government was expected to build nine Future Frigates as part of its SEA 5000 program.

“BAE Systems has bid to supply nine Anti-Submarine Warfare Frigates to the Royal Australian Navy. If the bid is successful, the ships could feature our MES,” he said.

The LSA Marine Evacuation Systems can be deployed to evacuate 115 people at a time in less than three minutes.