SAVING LIVES. Members of the Philippine Navy’s Naval Forces Northern Luzon disaster response and rescue team (DRRT) evacuate flood victims in Luna, La Union on Tuesday (Oct. 12, 2021). The Navy deployed DRRTs to areas in northern Luzon that were severely affected by Severe Tropical Storm Maring. (Photo courtesy of NFNL)

MANILA – The Philippine Navy’s Naval Forces Northern Luzon (NFNL) has deployed two disaster response and rescue teams (DDRTs) to areas in the Ilocos region that were affected by Severe Tropical Storm Maring.

In a statement late Tuesday, NFNL public affairs office chief Lt. Madel Ladera said the DRRT 1’s 11 personnel assisted the regional Office of Civil Defense (OCD) and were dispatched to conduct road clearing operations in Barangay Pallogan, Tagudin, Ilocos Sur and hauling and distribution of relief goods in Barangay Pudoc in the same town.

Meanwhile, the DRRT 2’s team of divers, equipped with rubber boats and outboard motor, was deployed to Barangay Sucoc Sur, Luna, La Union to conduct rescue operations.

“Navy reservists from Baguio City also were augmented to the CDRRMC (City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council) Baguio City for the evacuation, search, and retrieval of victims flooding and landslide in Barangay M. Roxas, Baguio City,” Ladera said.

The DRRT of the Marine Battalion Landing Team 10 stationed in Barangay Aridowen, Sta. Teresita, Cagayan also evacuated 35 families from the village’s Purok 1, 2, and 3 to the Aridowen Elementary School.

“The Northern Luzon Command, through the NFNL, is one with the local government units in bringing prompt, responsive, and effective assistance to the communities affected by the typhoon amid the ongoing pandemic,” Ladera said.

Meanwhile, Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief, Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, commended police officers in northern Luzon and other parts of the country who are assisting ongoing disaster relief efforts.

“I commend all our personnel in Northern Luzon and other areas severely affected by widespread flooding for their hard work and sacrifices in responding to the calls for assistance of our kababayans,” he said in a statement.

Eleazar also lauded the police officers for heeding the call of duty even though they have their own families to take care of.

Last week, he directed unit commanders to coordinate with their respective local government units (LGUs) to prepare for the possible adverse effects of “Maring”.

Part of the order was to place on standby PNP resources and personnel who would immediately respond to any untoward incident related to the weather disturbance.

Police officers were also tasked to assist in preemptive evacuations of residents in storm surge-, flood-, and landslide-prone areas.( with report from Lloyd Caliwan/PNA)