“We are primarily a sea-going people; we move a lot and do business using inter-island transport systems, even during our ancestors’ days,” Shipyards Regulation Service (SRS) Director Engr. Ramon C. Hernandez said.
“As part of MARINA’s thrust of promoting a culture of safety at sea, we have conducted studies on the level of safety traditional wooden-hulled vessels provide. The result prompted us to look for alternative and better materials and systems that will prevent accidents during sea transport,” Engr. Hernandez explained.
The study focused on safety levels of wooden-hulled vessels resulted to a gradual phase out of vessels still using wood as its hull, and is part of the mandatory Vessel Retirement Program in the revised implementing rules and regulations of Republic Act 9295, “An Act promoting the development of Philippine domestic shipping, shipbuilding, and ship repair and ship breaking, ordaining reforms in government policies towards shipping in the Philippines, and for other purposes,“ Rule IX, Section 23 – Retirement of Old Vessels.
“Although the materials for alternative hulls like fiberglass are a bit costlier than wood, the safety of FRP boats far outweigh the cost,” Engr. Hernandez added.
The use of alternative materials for boat design and construction with proven higher safety levels is advantageous to both ship owner or operator and the public that relies on sea transport to get on with their businesses.
The training was formally opened with an invocation from Engr. Maria Teresa D. Mamisao from MARINA-SRS. Engr. Hernandez gave his welcome message and introduced the lecturers. Meanwhile, Atty. Gloria Victoria-Bañas imparted inspiration and appreciation to attendees and partners who made the event possible.
Presented during the training were different kinds of fiberglass materials, the processes on boat-building using fiberglass materials, scantling calculations of FRP boats, assembly of hull and deck, installation of outboard engine and accessories, and how to repair FRP boats. Workshop activities on actual FRP boat-building provided hands-on experience for the MARINA technical personnel. The three-day intensive training took place at the ALS Marine Boat Factory in Brgy. Calibuyo, Tanza, Cavite. The event was a partnership effort of MARINA with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) through Mr. Tomoyuki Fukuhara, its expert on Maritime Safety Policy and Maritime Industry Modernization; the ALS Marine Center Corp; and the Yamaha Motor Co. Ltd.
Photos during the training are shown below.