DOST Fiber Glass Rescue Boat goes CALABARZON

With better features, lower cost, and higher efficiency, the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) fiber glass rescue boat promises effective and efficient rescue operations in CALABARZON.

The local government of General Nakar, Quezon purchased another unit of DOST’s fiber glass rescue boat in addition to units deployed in San Mateo, Cainta, Malolos, and Batangas after the boat’s first year of launching.

According to Engr. Eric Bautista of the Technical Services Unit of DOST 4A, the local government unit (LGU) of Quezon saw the need for a rescue boat since the Agos and Daraitan river system floods during heavy rain.

DOST’S Fiber Glass rescue boat poses distinct and better features than rubber boats. The subsequent table summarizes this:

“The price is the first benefit they see in acquiring the boat,” said Engr. Bautista.

Compared with rubber boats which cost P300,000.00 per unit, a fiber glass rescue boat only costs P200,000.00.

As the boat was designed strong enough to be run by an Outboard Motor (OBM) yet light enough to be paddle-driven, Engr. Bautista added that they promote the boat packaged with an OBM and trailer. This makes the boat even more inexpensive than rubber boats.

“All of the boat’s components are completely made from fiberglass materials making maintenance cost as low as possible,” Engr. Bautista reiterated.

Aside from having lower price than rubber boats, fiber glass rescue boats also have other unique and distinct features. For instance, fiber glass rescue boats can accommodate 8-12 persons.

“In operation, the unit’s seat can be removed in order to provide larger space for occupants,” Engr. Bautista said.

Aside from ferrying people, household appliances and domestic animals can also be transferred through the boat. There are also small compartments/cabinets in the boat where equipment for rescue operations can be stored.

Furthermore, the boat was specially designed for inland flooding.

“Ang problema kasi sa rubber boat, usually pag nagkaroon ka ng flooding sa inland communities, pagpasok ng boat mo dun sasabit na siya sa bakod bakod. Nasisira rubber boats mo. Pag balik mo sa area magkakaroon ka patching ng rubber bago ka mag-proceed sa next rescue operation (The problem with rubber boats is that it can easily be punctured when going through narrow roads. So you still need to patch the rubber before going to the nest rescue operation),” Engr. Bautista mentioned.

Since fiber glass rescue boat is made up of 90 percent fiber glass, it will not puncture in case of contact with pointed objects. It can also be maneuvered easily which makes it more efficient and effective to be used in rescue operations in narrow areas in communities.

“On the pipeline is the creation of proposal to provide our cooperators with an ideal fabrication shop for the fiberglass rescue boats,” Engr. Bautista claimed.

According to him, continuous promotion to different LGUs outside the region will be monitored for the succeeding months.

The promotion will be done thru the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) by conducting demo of the fiberglass rescue boat to different areas in the region. Displays in various science and technology exhibits, and media releases will also be conducted to further disseminate the information regarding the technology.

“We would be having the 5th technical working group meeting this September to discuss the adjustments to be made based from the feedback of the users from actual rescue operation. Inputs from different LGUs will also be accounted for,” Engr. Bautista said. — Ma. Alexandra P. Dayrit

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