Coast Guard leads rescue exercise in Iloilo

Published August 14, 2022, 3:04 PM

by Tara Yap

ILOILO CITY – The Philippine Coast Guard-Western Visayas recently led a search and rescue exercise with other government agencies off the coast of this city.

A SEARCH and rescue exercise was held at the Iloilo Strait, the body of water separating Iloilo City and the island province of Guimaras. (PCG)

“The exercise aimed to develop an updated search and rescue contingency plan in responding not only in maritime incidents, but also disaster preparedness,” said Commodore Edgar Ybañez, PCG-Western Visayas chief.

Ybañez said that the August 12 simulation exercise also sought to harness operational capabilities and strengthen partnerships among government agencies and local governments.

The simulation exercise was conducted on the Iloilo Strait, a body of water separating Iloilo City and neighboring towns from the island province of Guimaras.

This body of water has seen several maritime incidents.

In August 31, 2019, 31 people died when three passenger motorboats capsized. The PCG was under fire for allowing succeeding trips hours after the first motorboat capsized.

Joining the PCG-Western Visayas were the PCG Auxiliary, the Philippine Navy, the Office of Civil Defense-Region 6, Bureau of Fire Protection-Region 6, Department of Health (DOH), the 61st Infantry Battalion (IB) of the Philippine Army, the Philippine Port Authority-Region 6, the Bureau of Customs-Region 6, the Philippine National Police-Maritime Group, the Philippine Red Cross-Iloilo, and the Iloilo Watercraft Association.