It was forty one years ago that the Coast Guard District National Capital Region-Central Luzon was activated and became the premier District of the Philippine Coast Guard. Since that time, CGDNCR-CL has been in the forefront in achieving the vision and mission of PCG. The District has outstandingly performed numerous tasks of the Command which include addressing various concerns in the largest ports and busiest sea lanes of the country not to mention the huge volume of maritime traffic in the international ports of Manila Bay and Subic Bay.
The numerous accomplishments over the year of the District were made possible through the continuing hard work, professionalism, sincerity and good team work of the men and women of the District. Following are some of the activities and accomplishments of this District in the performance of various maritime functions and missions in consonance with the mandated functions of the Philippine Coast Guard:
Continuous Conduct of Trainings
Typhoon Doctrine Seminar. Information being provided to the public is one of the massive ways in preventing incidents during calamities, so aside from the quick responses of our operating units to SAR incidents, the District and its Stations have continuously conducted information and education campaigns by providing free maritime safety seminars not only to our own personnel but also to residents living along the coasts of its AOR.
Basic Lifeguard Training Course. The most common reason for aquatic accident is lack of safety knowledge. Tragic water accidents happen quickly and every second counts in drowning incident. Thus, the District has endeavored to raise an awareness campaign on beach safety in order to enhance public safety in beach resorts. In pursuit of the Coast Guard mission, this District has been conducting/offering free Basic Lifeguard Training Courses (BLTC) for lifeguards from various hotels and resorts in order to have an adequate number of lifeguards which will ensure the safety of local and foreign tourists and eliminate drowning incidents. The BLTC aims to develop and hone the skills of every lifeguard participant particularly on lifesaving techniques during emergency. This unique training provided a high level of confidence on each participant who were required to undergo and respond to a realistic hands-on lifesaving scenario prior to the completion of the course.
Fluvial Parade Activities. Operating units constantly provide assistance and act as security marshals on occasions of fluvial parades in their respective AOR, thereby developing good public relations and gaining public trust with the people around its AOR while promoting sea safety. Personnel of NCR-CL conducted safety inspections of watercraft used in fluvial parades to ensure their seaworthiness while rescue units were on hand to ensure the safety of thousands of participants in these fluvial parades. The safety of thousands of devotees was ensured by NCR-CL personnel who were present in at least 6 fluvial parades conducted in different parts of the AOR. Through excellent teamwork, all fluvial parade activities were successfully completed without any untoward incidents. Sea Marshals. The aftermath of Superferry 14 incident prompted the activation of Task Force Sea Marshal (TFSM) in March 2004, which deploys a composite team of PCG, AFP and PNP personnel on board passenger vessels departing from various ports and acts as security and deterrent forces while the vessels are underway. An element from the Coast Guard acts as head of each sea marshal team. The Task Force Sea Marshal,composed of about 200 officers and personnel, is under the operational control of C,CGDNCR-CL.
Over the past years, TFSM has likewise, developed a professional rapport with the local agencies and NGOs for its involvement on averting illegal women and child trafficking, theft and other unlawful acts which transpire in the conduct of their mandated tasks on board commercials vessels.
In November 2008, Sea Marshals onboard M/V Our Lady of Good Voyage successfully apprehended Nasif Papandayan, also known as “Pakpak” who has a warrant of arrest for a case of murder in Dasmarinas, Cavite. In many other cases, while conducting security inspections, Sea Marshals were credited with apprehensions on illicit drugs trafficking and gun shipment. In a nutshell, our Sea Marshals carry out multiple missions in addition to assisting in ship and port security. In the recent sinking of M/V SF-9 of Aboitiz Transport Services near the Zamboanga peninsula, the four (4) sea marshals onboard helped immensely in the orderly disembarkation of passengers during the abandonship and were in fact among the last few people to leave the ill-fated vessel. They were also instrumental in reviving a young girl who got drowned as they successfully conducted CPR to said victim onboard the sinking ship while hounded by other cries for help and the continuous tilting of the vessel during the said critical period.
Rescue Activities and Retrieval. For the past few months, several drowning incidents were reported arising from the individuals calls of residents and concerned citizens seeking for Coast Guard assistance and response. Quick responses have been made possible thru the aid of the District personnel, operating units and the Coast Guard Special Operations Group NCR-CL.
District operating units, in collaboration with the PCGA, LGUs, NGOs, other government agencies and concerned citizens, conducted various search and rescue operations. Prominent among these was the successful SAR operations conducted by CGS Subic to F/B Maria Antonia 2 with eighteen (18) crewmembers/fishermen onboard when a fishing boat encountered engine trouble between Capones Island and Zapatos Island in San Antonio, Zambales at the height of typhoon Julian. CG Station Subic was also successful in its conduct of evacuation, rescue and assistance to more than 800 resisdents of Botolan, Zambales who were trapped atop their houses due to severe flooding caused by the collapse of a dike due to continuous heavy rains. The significant efforts done by the combined teams of Coast Guard and the 102nd PCGA Squadron under the command of the Station Commander, CGS Subic in Botolan Zambales were recognized and were published in front pages of two leading newspapers and aired on television and radio stations for three days.
On 26 February 2009, personnel of CGS Bataan successfully conducted rescue operations on four (4) fishermen whose motor banca capsized at vicinity 3.5 nautical miles north of San Jose, Corregidor Island.
With all these, no other form of remuneration could equal the gratitude that the people showed to all our operating units for all the search and rescue efforts done. It is also worthy to note that the District responded to 51 other rescue/retrieval operations involving people who met accidents in rivers and other small but deep water tributaries. Establishing Marine Environmental Awareness. With the growing concern on environmental protection and numerous pronouncements emphasizing the need for protection and preservation of the marine environment, the District thru CGS Pasig has given its full support by directly participating in various environmental projects specifically the rehabilitation of the Pasig River with the ultimate goal of making it alive again. The District and the said Station gave their continous support to the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission (PRRC). In relation, CGS Laguna de Bay also works hand-in-hand with the Laguna Lake. CGS Laguna de Bay assisted the LLDA and DENR in the demolition of more than 200 illegally constructed fish cages, pens and structures along Taguig, Alabang and Muntinlupa.
Through good partnership, operating units have been working with the members of Coast Guard Auxiliary District NCR-CL in the conduct of regular coastal clean-up in the different coastal barangays. Moreover, in order to remind the residents in the coastal barangays came up with a joint project on the installation of billboards along the coastlines with the slogan “SAMA-SAMA AT TULUNG-TULONG TAYONG PANATILIING MALINIS AT WALANG POLUSYON ANG ATING BAYBAYIN AT KARAGATAN,” purposely to encourage people on saving our environment. District Headquarters, Stations and Detachment personnel,in coordination with Auxiliary units have planned and worked well during the September 19, 2009 coastal clean-up operations to commemorate the International Coastal Clean-up Day and on September 26 to augment coastal clean-up efforts during the Maritime Week celebration in support of the thrust of the PCG leadership. The said PCG thrust also includes District and Auxiliary efforts in tree and mangrove planting activities.
District Headquarters, Stations and Detachment personnel, in coordination with Auxiliary units have planned and worked well during the September 19, 2009 coastal clean-up operations to commemorate the International Coastal Clean-up Day and on September 26 to augment coastal clean-up efforts during the Maritime Week celebration in support of the thrust of the PCG leadership. The said PCG thrust also includes District and Auxiliary efforts in tree and mangrove planting activities. M/V CAPTAIN UFUK. On 20 August 2009, a joint team composed of personnel from the Mariveles Bureau of Customs Office, CGS Bataan and Mariveles local PNP conducted a board and search inspection to a suspicious foreign vessel that arrived from Jakarta, Indonesia reportedly loaded with illegal firearms while anchored at waters off Mariveles, Bataan . The said operation resulted in the successful apprehension of the foreign flag vessel “M/V CAPTAIN UFUK”, a 2,451 gross tons, single crew 1967-built Panamanian registered general cargo vessel, and its cargo of fifty (50) galil SS1-V1 caliber 5.56 assault riffles, one hundred twenty (120) empty magazines and forty five (45) bayonets. The said firearms shipment was considered a serious national security concern.
The District operating units continue to address piracy issues in its AOR through the conduct of maritime patrol/seaborne operation to deter and prevent any act of piracy in the waters of Manila Bay and Zambales. Other Operations. On 10 February 2009, CGS Bataan conducted maritime rescue operations on the phenomenal presence of more than two hundred trapped melon- headed dolphins at the murky and shallow waters of Pilar, Bataan. The said incident caught a lot of attention as the dolphins were trapped.