Navy, Air Force, civilian volunteers join search for missing diver
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Navy (PN), the Philippine Air Force (PAF), and volunteer divers are part of the search and rescue operations for missing diver Bryan Nazareno in Tubbataha Reef in Palawan.
The Western Command (Wescom) said in a statement on Thursday, June 6, that the operations, which also involve the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), will continue even in inclement weather.
"Wescom, in coordination with various stakeholders, will continue conducting the joint search and rescue operations despite inclement weather," Wescom said in a statement.
"Naval vessels and aircrafts of this command are currently being used in the area. As of this date, the missing diver has not yet been located," it added.
Wescom also said it accepted the help offered by UNTV for use of its underwater drone capabilities to augment the search and rescue operations.
It added that PN Islander 312 would also be deployed to join the operations.
PCG Spokesman Captain Armand Balilo said Palawan Governor Jose Alvarez lent his airplane to help find Nazareno.
Nazareno was last seen in Amos Rock in Tubbataha Reef on Monday afternoon, June 3. He was part of the group of underwater photographer Scott "Gutsy" Tuason.
Wescom said it received the report on Nazareno past 9 pm on Monday night, and deployed a Navy patrol ship to the area at 2 am the following day. A parallel search at South Islet in Tubbataha Reef began at 5:30 am on Wednesday, June 5.
It added that on Wednesday Navy divers searched the area southwest of the Amos Rock dive site. – Rappler.com