One of the Philippine Navy’s (PN) largest sea vessels has successfully completed her fourth relief transport mission for the victims of typhoon “Odette” as the military showed no signs of slowing down in its humanitarian assistance and disaster response (HADR) operations exactly one month since the calamity struck.
BRP Tarlac (LD601) arrived in typhoon-hit areas in Visayas and Mindanao on Sunday, Jan. 16, while carrying 450 tons of consolidated relief goods and essential items, according to Commander Benjo Negranza, PN spokesperson.
This was exactly one month ago since Odette wreaked havoc on Dec. 16, 2021.
“LD601 is transporting about 450 tons of consolidated relief goods and essential items from different government agencies, PN units, and stakeholders to be distributed to those affected by ‘Odette’ in Cebu, Bohol, Surigao, and Leyte,” Negranza said in a statement on Monday, Jan. 17.
Prior to this, BRP Tarlac, which is 123 meters long, made her first relief mission on Dec. 24 when it transported around 350 tons of relief goods and other items in Cebu. It also carried a 200-man contingent from the Philippine Marine’s 9th Marine Battalion Team for the conduct of HADR tasks.
It was followed by a second mission on Dec. 31 when BRP Tarlac sailed again to Cebu, this time carrying 488,000 kilos of relief goods, 53 tons of rolling cargoes, and members of the Navy’s Meteorological Oceanographic Center (NAVMETOC).
The NAVMETOC team brought a side scan sonar with them to map out the hazards to the navigation at the north entrance of Mactan channel and its nearby approaches.
Meanwhile, the third transport mission happened on January 7 when BRP Tarlac carried its heaviest load thus far – 542,206 kilos of relief goods and 50 tons of rolling cargoes for HADR operations in Visayas and Mindanao.