The Chinese and Philippine Coast Guard ships on Wednesday held their first joint maritime exercise on search and rescue and combating fire at sea in waters off Manila in the South China Sea, according to the report by BenarNews on Jan.15.
The Chinese Coast Guard ship with pennant number 5204 and the BRP Tubbataha, a 44-meter (144-foot) multi-role response Philippine vessel, both were equipped with water cannons used in firefighting assistance, took part in the exercise aimed at achieving “interoperability at sea,” the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) said.
Chinese and Filipino personnel were given a scenario where a vessel caught fire in its cargo hold while sailing in waters near Manila. Both coast guard ships deployed inflatable boats along with rescue swimmers to save the mock victims, the PCG said.
The rescued people were then transferred to a third vessel with a medical team onboard for medical assessment and treatment. Eventually, the “troubled” boat was declared out of danger, with no “casualties” recorded.
“The activity allowed Chinese and Filipino personnel to exercise interoperability and strengthen their capabilities in responding to such crises,” the Philippine Coast Guard said in a statement.
The joint maritime exercise on search and rescue, and combating fire at sea are part of the week-long activities of Chinese Coast Guard’s port call in Manila. During the visit, the Coast Guards of the two sides will hold a vessel open day, carry out joint search, rescue and firefighting exercises, and have friendship sports matches from January 14 to 17, 2020.
For the first time the China Coast Guard (CCG) paid a friendly visit to Philippine on Tuesday morning. The visit aims to strengthen understanding, mutual trust, and cooperation between the Philippines and China Coast Guard in a bid to promote maritime security and maritime law enforcement in the South China Sea.