The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) in Bohol scored plus points when all they rescued 64 passengers and 19 crew from a boat that ran aground early morning of October 9, 2019, in the vicinity seawaters off Danajon Bank.
PCG search and rescue team dispatched to the site also assured that aside from the slight dents in the boat’s hull, the grounding boat did not damage the area, had no damaged propellers and noted no oil spills.
The boat: MV South Pacific operated by Southern Pacific Transport Corporation is a 230.99 gross ton passenger ship and cargo vessel with a capacity of 204 passengers and has Cebu as home port.
MV South Pacific accordingly left Bato, Leyte at 9:00 PM October 8 with 59 passengers and 19 crew members, according to the captain of the ill-fated ship, Arturo Sullano.
While cruising off to Cebu, the boat strayed into the shallow waters and accidentally ran aground at about 1:00 AM, the skipper said in his report.
Good the incident happened in calm seas, otherwise it could be a major problem, observers who learned of the incident commented.
It was about 3:55 AM on October 9 that PCG PO1 Uy relayed to Coast Guard Tagbilaran the information and the exact coordinates of the grounding incident, for proper action.
Coast Guard Station (CGS) Tagbilaran then immediately called CGS Talibon to verify and report.
By about 4:15 of October 9, CGS Talibon established contact with the ill-fated boat captain, who confirmed the incident.
CGS Talibon then dispatched a search and rescue (SAR) team to do visual and surface inspection.
By early morning, the PCG SAR team boarded the boat and conducted an inspection in the engine room and steering room, accompanied by the ship’s crew.
The team also found no water seepage or spillage and noted that the passengers were all in good physical condition and no one was injured during the incident.
To facilitate the extraction of the stuck boat, the PCG them proceeded to transfer the passengers to PCG’s Multi Role Response Vessel (MRRV) and used a rubber boat to ferry the passengers to the PCG boat.
At about 9:00 AM, the PCG MRRV then left the stranded MV South Pacific and carried the 64 passengers and 3 crew members, to their actual destination, which is Cebu. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)