Public reminded to observe safety during beach outings

Robie de Guzman   •   April 1, 2019   •   1386

MANILA, Philippines — The dry season is on and almost everyone is raring to go to the beach and resorts to relax and cool down in the punishing heat.

But before taking a dip in the waves, the public is reminded to observe safety measures to avoid any untoward incidents.

The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) on Monday reminded beachgoers anew to check if the resort has life saving equipment installed and lifeguards who are ready to respond to water-related incidents such as drowning.

Beachgoers should also bring their own first aid kit in case of emergency, and heed the safety regulations issued by the beach resort management.

Before wading into the water, they should also check if there are flag signals, safety nets and bouy markers as well as safety signage and restricted areas.

Beachgoers are also advised to avoid swimming in areas that serve as passageway of sea vessels at ports.

When travelling with family or group of friends, inform them first of your whereabouts before taking a plunge. Adults should always keep an eye on children and guide the elderly to help avoid possible incidents while swimming in the sea.

Abide by the buddy system to stay safe, and refrain from swimming alone especially when inebriated.

Authorities also advise the public to take note of local emergency numbers and medical facilities in the area.

Over the weekend, the PCG inspected beaches and resorts to ensure the safety of tourists and excursionists who are planning to take a vacation in the coming week.

The PCG also asked local authorities to monitor and install life-saving equipment in rivers and falls frequented by tourists who are seeking other locations for their water escapades aside from the beach. – Robie de Guzman

Authorities recover two more bodies in Iloilo-Guimaras strait tragedy

Robie de Guzman   •   August 6, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Authorities on Tuesday recovered at least two more bodies amid ongoing search for the missing victims of the Iloilo-Guimaras strait tragedy, according to the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG).

Around 9 a.m., personnel from the PCG and the Philippine Air Force found a body of a man wearing black shorts and t-shirt.

A few hours later, authorities found another body of a male, this time wearing navy-blue shorts and yellow shirt, sporting a black wristwatch and a ring on one of his fingers.

The bodies were found in waters surrounding Dumanggas and Guimaras areas, the PCG said.    

According to PCG Lieutenant Junior Grade Charibel Pugong, the bodies are already bloated and in an advanced state of decomposition.

“Isang naging problema namin doon medyo nahirapan po tayo sa pagrecover kasi bigla pong lumakas ang ulan and then ang hangin tapos malaki po ang alon so nahirapan po tayo sa pagkuha ng cadaver,” Pugong said.

Authorities are still working to identify the bodies and verify whether these were among the victims of the maritime incident.

Last Saturday (August 3), three pump boats capsized in the waters off Iloilo and Guimaras due to a sudden squall or violent winds.

READ: MARINA begins probe on Iloilo-Guimaras strait incident

Authorities said an investigation into the incidents is underway. (with details from Lalaine Moreno)

PH Coast Guard ships sail to quake-hit Batanes for relief ops

Robie de Guzman   •   August 2, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Two vessels of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) are on their way to Batanes province to bring relief goods and supplies for the victims of two successive earthquakes that jolted Itbayat town last July 27.

The PCG said the ships called BRP Malabrigo and BRP Capones are carrying relief goods and supplies including tents (steel frame and tent cover), sleeping kits, laminated sack roles (lona), boxes of canned goods, noodles, bottled water, toiletries, powdered milk and packs of rice.

The supplies, which were loaded on the ships on Wednesday (July 31), were from the Department of Social Welfare and Development and the PCG Auxilliary.

The vessels left on Thursday morning but it remains unclear on when the ships will arrive in Batanes due to strong waves, according to the PCG.

The mobilization is part of the agency’s response plan following President Rodrigo Duterte’s directive to assist Batanes residents heavily affected by the tremors.

According to PCG Commandant Admiral Elson Hermogino, three vessels including the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources’ BRP Francisco Dagohoy have been tasked to conduct a transport mission to Batanes.

The PCG also deployed its Islander plane with medical teams on board to assist the Department of Health (DOH) personnel attending to the medical needs of residents affected by the earthquakes.

Popcorn cooled by liquid nitrogen gains popularity in Japan in hot summer

Robie de Guzman   •   July 29, 2019

Popcorn cooled by liquid nitrogen, an innovative street food, has gained popularity in Osaka, Japan as high temperatures continue to scorch many areas in hot summer.

A creative cold drink store in Osaka recently launched a new product, called “frozen popcorn”. The shop assistant makes creamy popcorn with sweet corn from Tokachi area of Hokkaido Prefecture as raw material, mixes the popcorn with liquid nitrogen at around 200 degrees Celsius below zero in a pot and pours them into a cup.

A large amount of heat is carried away during the vaporization of liquid nitrogen, which makes the popcorn cool and crisp.

“It gives me a cool feeling in mouth. Then it seems that the popcorn has melted in my mouth. It’s very tasty,” said a customer.

According to the store manager, the small store has gone viral on social media, and attracted many customers to come every day to take photos.

Each cup of frozen popcorn sells for 600 yen (about 5.52 U.S. dollars). The store sells up to 400 cups a day.

“Currently, we have an average of 150 customers a day, with daily turnover of 100,000 yen (about 920.17 U.S. dollars),” said Jinno Kazuki, a shop assistant. (REUTERS)

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