June 17, 2024

BONTOC, Mountain Province – The skills and knowledge of the members of the Bontoc Emergency Response Team (BERT) have been enhanced after their recent Water Rescue Skills Training for Emergency Responders.

The participants are BERT members who already have basic skills in water rescue operations and are physically and mentally fit.

The training was conducted in a Philippine Commission on Scuba Sports Diving-accredited dive center in Mabini, Batangas.

The training aimed to introduce to the participants the functions, maintenance, and manipulation of water rescue equipment.

The training was also conducted as part of the local government unit’s initiatives in increasing responders’ capacity in responding to disasters.

The participants learned the theories and concepts of water rescue operations, water safety procedures, and the right attitude when underwater to avoid emergencies especially during actual response operations. Individual evaluation of hand signals to be used during response was also conducted.

Prior to the underwater training, review of basic swimming techniques of the participants was conducted.

Safety measures, as well as the proper swimming techniques, were also emphasized.

When doing water rescue operations, the trainer and facilitators emphasized practicing the buddy system for safety reasons.

Depths of seven meters, 12 meters, and 15 meters were completed by the participants.

The simulation aims to acquaint participants with water rescue equipment when underwater and proper manipulation and maneuvering of equipment and gadgets.

Follow-up water rescue skills evaluation is scheduled in August along the Chico River. –Mei Shalom Ayan and Alpine K. Malwagay