One Royal Netherlands Navy ship is stationed in the Caribbean permanently. This Netherlands West Indian Guard Ship has an on-board helicopter and is used by both the Navy and the Coastguard for counter-drug operations, maintaining the rule of law, Search-and-Rescue operations, and disaster response assistance, e.g. in the event of a hurricane.
In this latter role, the guard ship provided assistance near New Orleans in the wake of hurricane Katrina in 2005 and in north-eastern Nicaragua after hurricane Felix had struck that region in 2007.
The support ship of the Royal Netherlands Navy in the Caribbean, HNLMS Pelikaan (A804), is used in support of operations and exercises of the Marine Corps and the Netherlands Antilles and Aruba Coastguard. In addition, the ship assists in operations of the guard ship. HNLMS Pelikaan is furthermore capable of rapidly providing assistance in the event of natural disasters with essential equipment, personnel and humanitarian relief goods.