A Brief History

8 Petroleum Platoon (Detachment) served in Vietnam from 9 Jan 1967 to 26 Aug 1968.

8 Petroleum Platoon served in Vietnam from 27 Aug 1968 to 12 Feb 1971

The detachment of 8 Pet Pl based at Nui Dat comprises eleven other ranks commanded by WO2 E.J. Rowsell. It is responsible for:

Holding and issuing packaged POL products. Operating a MOGAS and DIESO refuelling point for 1ATF vehicles and plant. Providing bulk AVGAS for refuelling fixed and rotary wing aircraft. Operating a JP4 (AVTUR) point for refuelling helicopters. This point can refuel up to ten aircraft simultaneously and has a capacity for storing 50,000 gals (US) in fabric tanks with provision for expansion to 70,000 gals (US). It was designed and built by 8 Pet Pl with Engineer assistance in site preparation. The point can cope with all types of helicopters up to CH54A (Sky Crane). An American UH-1C gunship caught fire while it was being refuelled at one of the JP4 points. The aircraft was fully armed and only prompt action on the part of the two petroleum operators on duty (PTE. Ward and PTE. Scales) prevented the fire from spreading to the storage areas. As a result of their actions both soldiers received a letter of commendation from the Commander 1ATF (Brig. R.L. Hughes). Investigation of the incident indicated that the cause of the fire was not attributable to the operation of the refuelling point in any way.

Eight Ball

Taken at Bein Hoa. 8/534 indicates attached to Petroleum Platoon 1 ATF Vung Tau and Nui Dat

8 Pet Platoon was original raised in Puckapunyal in 1960 and was sent to Vietnam in 1966 with the origianl Task Force as a detachment. In August 1968 it was decided to upgrade the Vietnam Detachment to the whole unit and to redesignate the unit remaining at Puckapunyal as 9 Petroleum Platoon, RAASC. These are the only two units of this nature that existed in the Australian Regular Army. A CMF Platoon was raised in 1966 to mirror the regular unit (1966) but was disbanded after Vietnam as was 8 Petroleum Platoon upon its return in 1972.

Des Fullick. Hot refuelling a Huey Cobra at Kangaroo Pad Helo refuel point 1969 Slicks 1969 Clearing Patrol 1969

Some of the information was kindly Supplied by Ray Hutchinson, ex 8 Petroleum Platoon, RAASC, 1968 - 71

8 Pet Pl