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Intruders board bulk carrier and tanker under cover of darkness

Fecha de la noticias: 11/02/2020 • Publicada: 11/02/2020 


Thieves have targeted a bulk carrier and a crude oil tanker in the eastbound lane of the Singapore Strait.

The incidents occurred within an hour of each other before dawn on February 9.

Both ships were underway off Nongsa Point on Indonesia’s Batam Island.

The first alarm was raised on the 58,000-deadweight tonne (dwt) bulk carrier NEW SPIRIT when crew discovered six intruders armed with knives in the ship’s engine room.

The robbers fled empty-handed without a confrontation.

Just over 30 minutes later, a single intruder was seen in the engine room of the 104,8995 dwt tanker SWARNA ?JAYANTI.

The crew raised an alarm and the intruder fled. A search of the tanker confirmed that engine spares were missing.

Assessment and Analysis

Since mid-December 2019, there have been at least 12 cases of vessels being boarded while underway in the Singapore Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) .

After the incidents on February 9, the Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery in Asia (ReCAAP) said it had become concerned at the persistence of the attacks.

It added that there had been no arrests and there was the possibility the thieves would strike again.

Ten of the 12 incidents involved bulk carriers and tankers. The other two cases saw thieves board barges carrying scrap metal.

The bulk carriers and tankers were all targeted at night. They were all heading east and were at eastern end of the Singapore Strait.

The thieves have sometimes carried knives but in the last three months there have been no violent confrontations.

Vessels moving through the Strait should exercise heightened vigilance.? They should increase watch keeping and lookout for small boats moving in a suspicious pattern.

Watches should be especially alert after dark.

All incidents should be reported immediately to the nearest coastal state; that is, to Indonesia or Singapore.

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