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    Fire Professionals from US, Philippines Gather to Build Understanding

    Fire Professionals from US, Philippines Gather to Build Understanding

    Photo By Capt. Mark Lazane | Philippine Air Force and civilian Federal Aviation Administration firefighters await...... read more read more



    Story by Capt. Mark Lazane 

    Pacific Air Forces

    BRIGADIER GENERAL BENITO N EBUEN AIR BASE, LAPU-LAPU CITY, PHILIPPINES—United States Air Force fire prevention specialists gathered with Filipino military and civilian fire professionals for an information sharing session on the fire-specific aspects of the C-130 as part of the current iteration of the Air Contingent here Oct. 3.

    The Air Contingent helps build the capacity of the Philippine Air Force and increases joint training, promotes interoperability and provides greater and more transparent air and maritime situational awareness to ensure safety for military and civilian activities in international waters and airspace. Its missions include air and maritime domain awareness, personnel recovery, combating piracy, and assuring access to the air and maritime domains in accordance with international law.

    During the fire subject matter expert exchange, U.S. and Filipino firefighters discussed C-130 egress procedures, emergency shut-off switches, engine fire eradication and manual engine shutdown procedures from within the aircraft.

    This particular engagement was unique both for its impromptu nature as well as its ability to allow Philippine Air Force professionals the ability to get “hands-on” with the C-130, a job normally reserved for civilian Federal Aviation Administration firefighters, their Filipino civilian firefighter counterparts.

    “Upon arrival here, we made contact with our Philippine Air Force counterparts as part of our duties with the Air Contingent and found out they don’t respond to aircraft fires; their flightline here is controlled by FAA firefighters,” said U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Devin Blue, 18th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron fire protection specialist.

    “So after reaching out to the FAA folks, we found out they don’t get to tour the C-130, so we took the chance to invite them out, put our heads together and go over an aircraft to which they’ve never been exposed.”

    Firefighters on the base near the large Philippine city of Cebu often train to respond to large commercial jet liners, but C-130s are not often the focus of their training, even though PAF C-130s are stationed here.

    “(This training) gave me a lot of knowledge, especially in regards to this specific aircraft,” said Pherius Pino, an FAA firefighter at the airport. “I would like to continue to explore this, not just this one, but other aircraft. I’m thankful for the opportunity to familiarize with this aircraft and how to respond to it in case of fire.”

    The special nature of the exchange was felt by participants from both countries.

    “I think they appreciated it,” Blue said. “We made it our mission to get everybody together, and we all really enjoyed working together.”

    “I’m so glad (the U.S.) came here to share the importance of the aircraft if ever there’s an incident, how to respond and what procedures to do,” said Philippine Air Force Staff Sgt. Reymarlon Baring, 560th Base Operations noncommissioned officer. “If there is similar training, it’s much better, because I know there are a lot of aircraft and it’s better to update the knowledge we know in the case of an emergency.”

    The deployment of the air contingent detachment is another example of how the United States and the Philippines are committed to maintaining credible combat power throughout the Indo-Asia Pacific region while the U.S. continues to work closely with the Philippines and our network of partner nations.



    Date Taken: 10.03.2016
    Date Posted: 10.12.2016 19:46
    Story ID: 211507
    Location: PH

    Web Views: 55
    Downloads: 0