Netizens cheer Red Cross’ ‘amphibians’

MANILA, Philippines — Vehicles from the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) that can travel both on land and in water have been rescuing people stranded because of heavy rains pounding Manila and nearby provinces.

A photo of PRC’s “amphibian” vehicles was uploaded on the Facebook page of Philippine Red Cross chairman and former senator Richard Gordon on Tuesday, with the post becoming viral on the social networking site.

The caption read: “[Admin] The Philippine Red Cross Amphibian together with other rescue vehicles of the PRC have been deployed since last night.”

Facebook users expressed awe over the photo, which has been shared by more than 6,000 people in just two hours. A number of them also urged other government agencies to use similar vehicles to make rescue operations more efficient.

“Parang walang ganito ang AFP? Nasaan na ‘yung mga assets ng government na ganito? PNP, LGUs and MMDA should invest on these assets. Puro rubber boats without outboard motors lang and meron yata,” said Facebook user Vijay de Guzman.

“Panalo! Buti pa Red Cross, may ganyan!” added user Rowell Ylagan.

The PRC first displayed its two “amphibians” in 2010, a year after tropical storm “Ondoy” claimed lives and destroyed properties in Manila and surrounding areas.

The vehicles were purchased from the United States to “enhance the organization’s rescue capabilities in times of disasters,” PRC said in a statement posted on its website.

Each is capable of transporting five tons worth of cargo, or about 33 passengers and the craft operator, per trip.

The PRC said earlier that aside from the “amphibians,” it also has rubber boats, 6×6 trucks, ambulances, tents, tower lights, generators and relief supplies ready for deployment.

(Source: ABS-CBN News)

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