Incidents of Piracy and Armed Robbery Against Ships in Asia in May 2016
ReCAAP ISC Monthly Report May 2016 released on June 4 carried a positive news for Asian maritime sector, of course with a note of caution.
The report said that the number of piracy and armed robbery incidents has decreased from 13 incidents reported in April 2016 to eight incidents in May 2016. The severity of incidents occurred in May 2016 has also reduced.
However, the report warns, there is no room for complacency as evidenced from the hijacking of Hai Soon 12 on 7 May 16, after a lapse of nine months from the last oil cargo theft which occurred in August 2015.
The failed attempt on Hai Soon 12 demonstrates the importance of timely reporting by the shipmaster, effectiveness of the information sharing mechanism and quick responses by the enforcement agencies.
Notably, six out of eight incidents reported in May 2016 occurred at ports and anchorages involving perpetrators who boarded ships to steal stores and escaped immediately once they are detected.
On this note, the ReCAAP ISC urges ship master and crew to exercise extra vigilance while at berth/ anchorage; and relevant port authorities to enforce the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) code.