BRP Ramon Alcaraz returns to India for repairs

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National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has said that Philippine Navy offshore patrol vessel BRP Ramon Alcaraz (PS16) returned to India after a fire incident onboard shortly after it left Cochin, India for Philippines on May 7.

The Philippine Navy said “initial investigation revealed that the fire broke at the main engine room. The ship’s rapid response team was able to put out the fire in 10 minutes. The incident incurred two personnel casualties and minor equipment damages.”

“The BRP Ramon Alcaraz has returned to Cochin, India. Luckily, the damage sustained was a minor one and the ship was able to sail into port under its own power and unassisted,” the defense chief said in a statement.

“Since the BRP Alcaraz was acquired from the US, the US Navy’s Naval Systems Command (NAVSEA) will assist in the conduct of its repairs,” Secretary Lorenzana said.

Secretary Lorenzana noted that they will use existing diplomatic mechanisms and the defense cooperation agreement with India to facilitate and expedite work on the ship so that it can return to the Philippines in the shortest time possible.