(Photo courtesy of Philippine Army)

MANILA – A 21-member team from the Philippine Army (PA)'s 525th Engineer Combat Battalion trained with counterparts in the Philippine Navy and Bureau of Fire in a collapsed structure search-and-rescue (CSSR) drill last June 9.

Army spokesperson Col. Xerxes Trinidad, in a statement Thursday night, said the activity was hosted by the Makati Development Corp and Ayala Property Development Corp. Safety Group at the Arca South, Barangay Western Bicutan, Taguig.

"The conduct of the drill is geared at enhancing the responders’ CSSR knowledge and skills that are needed in stabilizing and extricating victims trapped in collapsed structures using the safest and most appropriate procedures," he added.

Trinidad said this multi-agency training activity is in line with the thrust of PA commander Lt . Gen. Romeo Brawner Jr. to enhance the individual skills of soldiers and unit capabilities to bolster mission accomplishment.

The 525th Engineer Combat Battalion is the Army’s primary humanitarian assistance and disaster response unit that played a crucial role in saving lives in the aftermath of natural calamities.

Meanwhile, the PA's 31st Infantry Battalion, 9th Infantry Division together with the GMA Kapuso Foundation distributed some 1,000 food packs for families in Juban town, Sorsogon affected by Mount Bulusan’s phreatic eruption last June 5.

PA personnel and the GMA Kapuso Foundation relief team distributed around 900 food packs to families in Barangays Buraburan and Bacolod in Juban, Sorsogon from June 7 to 8 while 117 families staying in the Barangay Tughan evacuation center received the same assistance. (PNA)