Philippine Navy (PN) flagship BRP Gregorio Del Pilar (FF-15) is expected to be in Subic Bay, Zambales to repair damages caused by her Aug. 29 grounding in Hasa-Hasa (international Half-Moon) Shoal, Palawan within two to three days.
This was bared by Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) public affairs office chief Col. Noel Detoyato in an interview with the Philippine News Agency Tuesday.
Steaming time for Subic Bay is estimated to be “two days and 15 hours,” he added.
The ship is now being towed to Subic by the tugboats earlier dispatched to the scene. Initial damage assessment indicated that the BRP Gregorio Del Pilar is limited to the ship’s starboard (right) propeller which was earlier reported detached due to the grounding but repairable.
Detoyato added that the hull has no punctures and while the rudder is largely intact. BRP Gregorio Del Pilar was towed cleared from Hasa-Hasa Shoal around 11:54 p.m. Monday.
Meanwhile, PN flag-officer-in-command Vice Admiral Robert Empedrad lauded the officers and crew of the BRP Gregorio Del Pilar for “their for their composure in ensuring that no further damage was incurred while the ship was aground and while being retrieved.”
“The estimated dockyard time will still have to be determined as soon as BRP Gregorio Del Pilar reaches the repair facility in Subic. Although, both of its propellers were damaged no punctures or holes were noted throughout its underwater hull and freeboard,” Navy spokesperson Commodore Jonathan Zata said.
The BRP Gregorio Del Pilar is one of three Hamilton-class cutters acquired by the PN from the United States Coard Guard and converted into frigates.
These ships have a gross tonnage of 3,250 tons, a length of 378 feet, beam of 43 feet, and draft of 15 feet while its propulsion systems consist of two diesel engines and two gas turbine engines, giving it a top speed of 29 knots.
These vessels have a cruising range of 14,000 miles and has a sea and loiter time of 45 days and armed with a 76mm Oto Melara automatic cannon, 25mm and 20mm light cannons and .50 caliber machineguns.