US to handle retrieval of grounded, decommissioned Navy vessel in maritime exercise
MANILA, Philippines — The United States will handle the retrieval of the decommissioned Philippine Navy vessel which was set to be used as a mock target for a sinking exercise after it ran aground, Marine Deputy Commandant Brig. Gen. Jimmy Larida said on Friday at Fort Bonifacio where the closing ceremony of the Marine Aviation Support Activity (Masa) took place.
“The United States Marine Corps (USMC), particularly the Marforpac (Marine Corps Forces-Pacific) and the Philippine Marine Corps (PMC), is taking responsibility for that,” Larida said of the incident during a press conference after the ceremony.
“The Marforpac now has a certified contractor to retrieve the aground vessel,” he said, partly in Filipino.
Larida said the team is now waiting for better weather conditions before conducting an assessment for the retrieval operations.
The former BRP Lake Caliraya was stranded 60 meters away from the shoreline of Morong, Bataan on July 14, according to Larida.
On July 13, the PMC and USMC were supposed to sink the decommissioned motor tanker 12 nautical miles away from San Antonio, Zambales but it was cancelled due to inclement weather.
There were plans to reschedule the sinking exercise, but the activity was scratched after the ship ran aground.