Philippine Army (PA) units are now helping in the ongoing clearing and relief efforts in areas hit by Severe Tropical Storm Florita in Northern Luzon.
In a statement Wednesday night, PA spokesperson Col. Xerxes Trinidad said these units consist of regular and reserve units along with Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) cadets.
“The 17th Infantry Battalion, 5th Infantry Division, together with local government responders and policemen, distributed family food packs to typhoon-stricken families in the towns of Rizal in Cagayan and Pudtol in Apayao,” he said.
Meanwhile, reservists from the 201st Community Defense Center (CDC) of the 2nd Regional Community Defense Group and 201st Ready Reserve Infantry Battalion cleared toppled trees that blocked roads after “Florita” lashed Cagayan’s capital city of Tuguegarao.
Trinidad said the 5th Infantry Division also conducted clearing efforts in various towns of Isabela, Cagayan, and Apayao provinces.
“In the nearby province of Isabela, reservists and ROTC cadets from the 202nd Ready Reserve Infantry Battalion helped prepare evacuation shelters in Ilagan City for families who evacuated to safety during the onslaught of ‘Florita’,” he added.
Nearly 200 volunteers and advanced ROTC cadets have also been deployed to assist in the hauling and repacking of aid for typhoon-stricken families.
“The PA leadership has prioritized the development of a highly capable, well-trained, and readily deployable reserve units that will complement the Army’s active force. The Philippine Reservists Act (Republic Act 7077) mandates reserve units to assist relief and rescue efforts during calamities and socio-economic development initiatives,” Trinidad said. (PNA)