By Betheena Unite
Dozens of rescue vessels worth P31 million were acquired by the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) to boost future missions on expected threats of typhoons in the country.
The Coast Guard, in a blessing and launching ceremony Thursday, showed off its 40 new water assets which consist of 20 aluminum boats worth P16 million and another 20 personal watercrafts worth P15.5 million.
According to Admiral Elson Hermogino, PCG commandant, the new aluminum boats can speed up to 20 knots while the personal watercrafts have a maximum speed of up to 40 knots.
The vessels were recently delivered at the PCG national headquarters in Manila.
Rigid hull inflatable boats and 68 pick-up vehicles were also presented during Thursday’s event.
According to the Coast Guard, the new water assets were manufactured by Pacificfortia Marine Technologies, Incorporated; ALS Marine Center Corporation; and Scan Marine Incorporated.
Hermogino said the rescue vessels will be deployed for the rainy season to beef up the Coast Guard’s capacity in conducting maritime search and rescue, maritime security and coastal patrol.
They will be strategically deployed in all PCG districts nationwide and will be manned by the Coast Guard Special Operations Force, the commandant added.
Further, “Oplan Kahandaan: Typhoon Season” was reactivated in anticipation of typhoons that may hit the country this season.
Various disaster response and quick reaction teams composed of divers, rescue swimmers, paramedics, and K-9 units nationwide have been directed to be on full alert for prompt response operations to maritime and land-based disasters caused by weather disturbances and typhoons.
It was disclosed that 73 units of rubber boats with outbound motors and 12 seven-meter rigid hull inflatable boats are expected to be added into the Coast Guard’s water assets later this year.
The rubber boats will be acquired for P86,651,000 while the rigid hull inflatable boats will cost P142,121,088.
These assets will be also be deployed for rescue operations, patrol and interception, transport of crew, and equipment and diving support.