Piracy & Ship Attacks - December 2, 2010

By MarEx 2012-11-20 09:55:00

Three Attempted Hijackings

Three more merchant vessels escaped from pirating in the last three days thanks to the use of Best Management Practices, proving once more the efficiency of self-protection measures in this high risk area.

On Saturday 27 November, the MV D&K 1 reported it was under attack by two skiffs, approximately 760 nautical miles North East of Port Victoria (Seychelles). The Captain of the products tanker immediately altered course, increased speed and mustered all non essential crew in a safe room. Fire hoses were rigged on the deck along with foam turrets. The vessel also fired ships parachute flares to deter the Pirate Action Group (PAG). The churning volumetric mass of water curtain from ship’s side, in conjunction with the zigzagging manoeuvres, made it impossible for the skiffs to board the vessel.

On the following day, Sunday 28 November, the MV PISTIS was attacked, approximately 800 nautical miles North East of Socotra Island, by a skiff equipped with AK47 and ladders. While sending regular alerts on VHF 16, the Captain of the bulk carrier started taking evasive manoeuvres and all crew not in duty were gathered on the bridge. The PAG, after a short while, aborted its attack, realizing this vessel would not be an easy target.

Early this morning, 29 November, the MV IVER EXACT reported it was under attack by one skiff approximately 750 nautical miles of Socotra Island. The vessel was fired upon with Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPGs) and the Captain of the product tanker was able to observe ladders onboard the skiff. The PAG attempted to board the vessel, which led to the fell of one suspected pirate into water. The skiff, forced to retrieve the individual, abandoned the attack.

Pirating of MV ALBEDO in the Somali Basin

In the early hours of 26 November, the MV ALBEDO was pirated approximately 900 nautical miles East of Mogadishu (Somalia).

The MV ALBEDO is Malaysian flagged and owned, with a crew of 23 (Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Sri Lankan and Iranian). The vessel was carrying containers and was bound for Mombasa from Jebel Ali in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Including the MV ALBEDO, pirates are currently holding 22 vessels with 521 hostages.

Pirates Attack MV KYTHIRA

On 30 November 2010, the MV KYTHIRA reported it was under attack, more than 1,100 nautical miles (2,000 kilometres) East of Eyl, on the Somali coast.

The vessel reported that the Pirate Action Group (PAG), onboard one attack skiff, had fired weapons and had attempted to board the vessel on two occasions.

However, the crude oil tanker increased speed and conducted evasive manoeuvres in accordance with recommended Best Management Practices, which made it impossible for the PAG to board and take control of the vessel.

SOURCE: EU NAVFOR Somalia – Operation ATALANTA’s main tasks are to escort merchant vessels carrying humanitarian aid of the World Food Program (WFP) and vessels of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). EU NAVFOR also protects vulnerable vessels in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean, deters and disrupts piracy. In addition, EU NAVFOR monitors fishing activity off the coast of Somalia.

PHOTO 1: Pirate Action Group attacking the MV D&K1