The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) and the China Coast Guard (CCG) have conducted joint maritime drills on search and rescue (SAR) and combatting fire at sea in the vicinity waters off Manila City today, 15 January 2020.
The activity allowed PCG and CCG to exercise interoperability and strengthen their capabilities in responding to such crises.
The drill scenarios were as follows: PCG received a distress report that a vessel was caught on fire on its cargo hold while transiting the waters of Manila.
PCG monitored a 102-meter CCG vessel with bow number 5204 thru Vessel Traffic Management System (VTMS) in Manila and coordinated through the established hotline of communication between PCG and CCG.
To render immediate assistance, PCG deployed its 44-meter multi-role response vessel (MRRV) 4401, BRP Tubbataha, while CCG dispatched Vessel 5204. These assets are equipped with water cannons used in firefighting assistance.
Onboard the distressed vessel were five (5) passengers and eight (8) Filipino crew. As a prompt action, the rigid hull inflatable boats of deployed vessels were launched with rescue swimmers to aid the victims.
The rescued individuals were then transferred to MRRV 4401 with a medical team onboard for medical assessment and treatment, as needed.
Eventually, the troubled vessel was declared fire out, with no casualties recorded.
The joint maritime drills on SAR and combatting fire at sea are part of the week-long activities of CCG’s port call in Manila to strengthen understanding, mutual trust, and cooperation between PCG and CCG towards the promotion of maritime security and maritime law enforcement in the West Philippine Sea. PHILIPPINE COAST GUARD