‘Shock incidents blight overall decrease in maritime crime
Dryad Maritime has released its Q1 maritime crime figures which show an overall downturn in incidents across the Horn of Africa, the Gulf of Guinea and Southeast Asia since the same period last year. However, Dryad Maritime caution that ‘shock’ incidents and evolving criminal trends remain a very real threat to the shipping industry.
According toDryad,theoverallstatisticsshowa13%reduction incrime, but ‘shock’ incidentssuch as the kidnapand ransom of seafarers off the Niger Delta still present real and credible threats;six seafarers are stillbelieved tobeincaptivity in Nigeria.
Similarly,the hijack of MT Kerala from itsAngolan anchorage with a subsequenttheft of 13,000 tons of gasoil off the Niger Delta, has demonstrated the increasingly significant reach of Nigerian based criminals.
These shock incidents made internationalheadlines but across the Gulf of Guinea the media have failed to report the spate of incidents that has seen crew kidnapped and then released.
Ian Millen, Dryad Maritime’s Director of Intelligence comments “This analysis gives cause for concern and serves as a reminder to all seafarers to remain vigilant and employ appropriate risk reduction measures in all high risk areas. Maritime criminals, from those off Nigeria to Somali pirates and those that operate in the archipelago of Southeast Asia remain very much in business and are capable of inflicting misery on seafarers.The first line of defence is to be aware of their presence and take measures to ensure that their criminal activities are countered”.
In the Hornof Africa, reported incidents appear to have risen from 9 in Q1 2013 to 15 in Q1 2014, but Dryad analysts attributepartof this data to a misinterpretation of eventssuch as the misidentificationof regionalfishermen in the Southern Red Sea and off the coast of Oman.
However, Dryad cautionsagainst complacency, as a number of the reported incidents occurred are the result of Somali piracy.
“Somali pirates have not been totally eradicated.Armed attacks against MT Nave Atropos, south of Salalah in January and the Kenyan vessel, MV Andrea, close to the Somali coast in February have proved that broad containment of the threat does not mean it has been removed.On both occasions, the Somali attackers were only repelled by embarked armed security teams on the vessels concerned” adds Ian.
Across the waters of Southeast Asia, again the data highlights a decrease in reported maritime crime, with incidentsdroppingfrom 41 in Q1 2013 to 31 in Q1 2014.
However, Dryad analysts note the incidents that have been logged possibly indicate a newmodus operandiwith criminals demonstrating a trend towards robbery from vessels underway in the Singapore Strait rather than at boarding those anchor.
“The Singapore Strait has attracted attention with a number of vessels boarded for robbery in the first quarter of the year; a spate of attacks that has coincided with a reduction of incidents in the anchorages off Pulau Nipah, possibly signalling a change of modus operandi for criminal gangs who may have shifted attention to boarding vessels that are underway” continues Ian.
Dryad Maritime Q1 2014 Maritime Crime Infographic
Source: Dryad Maritime
Leave a Reply