4 passengers, 14 crew rescued from sinking motor launch in Basilan

ZAMBOANGA CITY – Elements of the Naval Forces Western Mindanao (NavForWem), together with the maritime police and the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), rescued four passengers and 14 crew members of a distressed motorboat off Lampinigan Island in Isabela City, Basilan, at dawn Thursday, January 14.

The sinking motorboat ML “Queen Shaima 3” off Lampinigan Island in Isabela City, Basilan province (via Nonoy Lacson / MANILA BULLETIN)

NavForWem Commander Commodore Toribio D. Adaci Jr said naval forces came to the aid of ML Queen Shaima 3, which was reported to have incurred a hole in its hull, causing water to get into its engine room.

A distress call was received around 4:33 a.m.

“Our naval forces immediately conducted lateral coordination with the PCG and Philippine National Police (PNP) Maritime for the prompt rescue operation,” Adaci said.

Adaci identified the four rescued passengers as Angelica Sali, female, 19, and a resident of Barangay Upper Calarian; Angel Enriquez, 21, from Tumaga; Jasmin Loyola, 19 and Erlin Moran, 19, of Sta. Maria all residents of this city.

During the initial investigation, the boat captain, identified only as Sonny, said that they encountered a surge while passing through the area which caused damage to the boat.

“Thank you to all our rescuers for saving our lives,” Sonny said in the local dialect.

Armed Force of the Philippines- Western Mindanao Command (AFP-WestMinCom) Commander Lt Gen Corleto Vinluan, Jr. said “this successful operation is a result of the good collaboration and coordination among the different security agencies”.

“We are grateful that no one was hurt in the incident while the rescued passengers were brought to Isabela City port and are currently under the custody of the PCG,” he said.