Wednesday, January 5, 2011
A Duck To Ride On.
It impressed me no less to see an amphibian truck typically called a duck, a legacy of the name of one of its enduring predecessor the DUKW, being successfully operated by a tourist company in Malacca during my recent visit there. Checking their website, I found that the truck is not a DUKW but actually a LARC V or Lighter, Amphibious Resupply, Cargo, 5 ton; which is an aluminium-hulled amphibious cargo vehicle capable of transporting 5 tons. It was developed in US during the 1950s, and is used in a variety of auxiliary roles to this day by no less than 5 National armed forces, and to my surprise by both the Philippines Marine and Singapore Combat Support Services Unit regionally.
That got me wondering why our own armed forces or security agency has not thought of this solution for our amphibious needs, if not the army or navy, at least the police or JPA3 Civil Defence agency should operate at least a squadron for use during our flooding season. We always complain that we do not have suitable transport to reach water logged areas, but the solution has been staring at our Powers-To-Be faces all this while. In the US the LARC V is undergoing SLEP as it has been found to be useful in emergency relief work, so should we not also consider this a viable solution. Don't la say that it will take a study tour to the States to decide on this, as it is already proven and operating locally. I have read that the Police managed to set a circumnavigation record with an amphibious RHIB on trial some time ago, but a RHIB will not have the capacity of this 5 ton Duck. Hopefully this post will get some brain juices working in someone working in our National Security Department. In any event, the Malaccan DUCK's should be made available for duty during a National emergency, but still this is a poor solution to an omnipresent threat.