By: LIEUTENANT COLONEL EDGARD A AREVALO PN(M)
Director, Naval Public Affairs Office
Wednesday, 14 October 2009
After grueling two weeks of rescue and relief operation, Navy Disaster Response and Rescue Teams (DRRT) were ordered to go back to their respective headquarters in San Fernando, La Union, Cavite and Metro Manila. The teams composed of officers, enlisted personnel, Navy reservists, amphibious crafts, rubber boats, 6x6 trucks and various other rescue and relief equipment has so far conducted a sizable number of rescue and relief missions notwithstanding equipment limitations and sapped energy due to prolong exposure to elements during these humanitarian operations.
A total of nine Disaster Response and Rescue Teams were able to rescue 873 individuals from their flooded homes to evacuation centers in San Carlos City, Dagupan City, Rosales, Calasiao and Sta Barbara, all in Pangasinan. Nine hundred thirty (930) stranded passengers were also brought to safety. The teams also recovered three elderly casualties in Rosales, Pangasinan. Two thousand six hundred twenty-two (2,622) families benefited from the relief goods distributed by the DRRTs in coordination with the LGUs of Pangasinan and Laoag not to include the 1,102 lbs of relief goods air dropped by the Navy’s Helicopter and Islander.
The Philippine Navy employed all the floating, air and land assets to alleviate the devastation caused by Typhoon “Pepeng” to our countrymen in the North. Naval Forces Northern Luzon through its Commander, Commodore Jose Luis Alano coordinated with other Fleet-Marine units to augment their teams already dispatched. DRRTs from Manila-Cavite area immediately responded to the call for augmentation.
The Philippine Navy though with scarce resources, will remain committed to be at the forefront of humanitarian endeavors in support to national government for the welfare of our fellow Filipinos.