MANILA, -- US military units participating in this year's "Balikatan" exercises have fired six reduced-range practice rockets (RRPRs) from their two HIMARS platform in Crow Valley Range Complex in Tarlac Monday.
This was confirmed by Philippine "Balikatan" spokesperson Capt. Celeste Frank Sayson Tuesday.
Philippine troops were present to observe the firing exercise, he added.
HIMARS is short for "M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System".
It is a US light multiple rocket launcher mounted on a standard Army medium tactical vehicle truck frame.
The RRPRs were fired by US Marines from the 2nd Platoon, Fox Battery, 14th Marine Regiment.
This is the first time HIMARS have fired in Philippine soil.
The RRPRs have a maximum range of 15 kilometers and it's ballasted with non-explosive material.
These weapons will be fired again this coming April 14 during the live-fire phase of the "Balikatan" exercises.
HIMARS can carry six rockets or one MGM-140 ATACMS missile on the US Army's new family of medium tactical vehicles five-ton truck, and can launch the entire multiple launch rocket system family of munitions.
It is interchangeable with the MLRS M270A1, carrying half the rocket load. The launcher is C-130 transportable.
Each HIMARS platform is worth over USD5 million.
The U.S. Marines from 2nd Platoon, Fox Battery, 14th Marine Regiment, fired six Reduced-Range Practice Rockets (RRPR) utilizing two M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), at Crow Valley, Philippines, April 4, 2016.