The spate of incidents occurred in Singapore Strait to the north of Batam.

Details of incidents:

Vessel type – direction: Involved in 12 incidents:

  • 6 bulk carriers 46.1%
  • 2 tankers 23.2%
  • 4 tugs and barges 30.7%

According to the report, the attacks were mostly against ships sailing in lower speed (10 knots) and with lower freeboards (below 10 metres), while the majority of targeted vessels (92.3%) were east bound.

a) Bulk carriers and tankers

  • 8/12 incidents took place on bulk carriers and tankers, travelling at about 9-10 knots and were eastbound.

All incidents occurred between 2300hrs to 0530hrs during hours of darkness/ minimal illumination as previously highlighted

b) Tugs and barges

  • 4/13 incidents were against slow moving tugs and barges.
  • 2/4 incidents occurred in daylight between 1100hrs to 1500hrs
  • 2 incidents took place between evening hours at 0200hrs to 0400hrs.

    Credit: IFC

Considering the reported incidents, IFC provides recommendations for those who plan transiting or being anchored at the Singapore strait.

  1. Activate the ship’s Automatic Identification System (AIS) at all times.
  2. Timely reporting to the local authorities.
  3. Increase vigilance in watch-keeping and deploy additional lookouts. Be wary of suspicious small boats approaching. Take photo of the suspicious boat and send to IFC.
  4. Participate in the IFC Voluntary Community Reporting (VCR) System and provide status update, while in transit, as much as possible.
  5. Use CCTV cameras for coverage of vulnerable areas (if available)
  6. Keep ship’s whistle, search lights and fog horn ready for immediate use.
  7. Secure or lift external ladders to prevent their use and to restrict external access to the bridge.
  8. Deploy Self-Protection Measures (SPM) eg. Rig the water spray hoses and foam monitors in a fixed position. Evasive manoeuvres have also been proven to deter perpetrators in the areas of concern.
  9. Secure all doors and hatches providing access to the accommodation and machinery spaces.
  10. Rig safety precautionary measures on the anchor cable hawse pipe while anchored.

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