DOTr conducts assessment on quake damages to Surigao airport

MANILA — Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Arthur Tugade led the assessment of the Surigao airport which was temporarily closed due to the extensive damage on its runway following a magnitude 6.7 quake that struck the city Friday night.

Tugade, together with airport officials, arrived in Surigao Saturday afternoon hours after the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) issued a notice to airmen (NOTAM) closing the airport for repair and rehabilitation.

DOTr stated that the tower, airport terminal and facilities incurred minimal damages and no staff was injured.

The CAAP sent engineers to the airport to conduct its detailed assessment and fast track the repairs.

Local airlines such as PAL, PAL Express, and Cebu Pacific Express have expressed all-out support to government relief operation in Surigao.

Meanwhile, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) has also dispatched a search and rescue vessel from Cebu to deliver clean drinking water to affected areas in Surigao.

The vessel may also be used for disaster relief operations. Around 150 PCG personnel are also being mobilized to augment government operations in Surigao. Aerol John Patena/