2020 saw a significant increase in incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships worldwide. The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) piracy reporting centre received 195 incident reports of piracy and armed robbery against ships worldwide in 2020, this compares to 162 in 2019.
This increase can be partly attributed to Incidents in the Gulf of Guinea that will only increase throughout the dry season.
Incidents in this area are particularly dangerous as over 80% of the attackers were heavily armed with guns and the perpetrators are known to use high levels of violence against shipboard personnel.
2020 also saw an extraordinary rise in the kidnapping of crew members. With 130 kidnapped in 22 incidents, this equates to 95% of crew kidnapped worldwide and held for ransom.
Of the vessels attacked in the region 25% involved crew kidnapping with ships up to 200 nautical miles from land attacked.
There have been several reported incidents in the Gulf of Guinea already in 2021 including the boarding of the M/V Mozart on the 23rd January during which one of the crew was sadly killed with 15 kidnapped.
For the protection of the crew and vessel it is of the utmost importance that owners, operators, and crew onboard follow –
The current Contact details are: -
Tel: +33(0)2 98 22 88 88
E-Mail: email@example.com transiting the VRA
Prior to any voyage that may enter a VRA and following the company Risk Assessment the company should consider how it will implement SPM’s
This should include a review and consideration of: -
Always report ALL actual, attempted, or suspicious piracy and armed robbery incidents occurring anywhere to the 24-hour manned IMB PRC. This is crucial in the response procedures as well as broadcasting the threat to ALL vessels in the area.