Nine were rescued after strong winds and waves heavily damaged their ranger station in Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park and World Heritage Site in Cagayancillo town on Christmas Day.
They were rescued by the Navy’s BRP Gregorio del Pilar (PS15) from El Nido after the Western Command (WESCOM) received a distress call from the Tubbataha ranger station.
The nine rangers included three from the Philippine Coast Guard, two from the Philippine Navy, and four civilians.
“Time is of the essence. Strong winds and waves heavily damaged their station that forced them to isolate in one small part of the barracks that remains intact,” said Vice Admiral Alberto Carlos said in a statement.
The PS 15 arrived near Tubbattaha Reef on December 27 and boarded the rangers at 2:26 p.m. with their essential equipment and belongings.
The rescued individuals were CG SN1 Alfred Leonard B Libungan, CG SN1 Gilbert Jhun M Cayapas, CGNO Jinnasir A Alani, SN2 Jerico C Ramos PN, SN2 Ronnel C Paiton PN, MPC Segundo F Conales Jr TMO, MPC Noel A Bundal TMO, BD Amado T Cayabo LGU Cagayancillo, BD Rogelio H Quilojano LGU Cagayancillo.
WESCOM clarified that they only boarded BRP Gregorio del Pilar temporarily so they can be safe from inclement weather. Some of them will leave to get construction materials and return to Tubbataha as soon as possible.