In both incidents, the perpetrators demonstrated violence toward crew with a knife.

In the first incident on 14 August at 1000 hrs, the perpetrator entered the cabin of the general steward, threatened him by pointing a long knife at him and stole his personal belongings. The perpetrator left the ship immediately via the mooring lines in a small unmarked blue motor banca stationed at the astern of the ship.

The second incident occurred on 20 Aug at 2021 hrs at 3 nm southeast of the first incident. The duty crew was attacked by a perpetrator with a knife when he was performing roving watch at the main deck. He suffered a cut on his right palm when trying to stop the attack but accidentally grabbed the blade of the knife. The injured crew was evacuated and sent to a hospital for treatment.

Ship masters and crew are strongly advised to exercise vigilance, maintain constant look-out for suspicious boats in the vicinity and report all incidents immediately to the authorities. It is also very important for the crew not to engage in a confrontation with perpetrators. The ReCAAP ISC urges the authorities to enhance surveillance, increase patrols and respond promptly to incidents reported by ships in order to arrest and prosecute the perpetrators.

The incidents

  1. On 14 Aug 20 at about 1000 hrs, chemical/oil product tanker, Pacific Sapphire, was berthed at Bauan, International Port Inc., Batangas when one perpetrator armed with a long knife boarded the tanker by climbing the mooring lines located at the starboard astern of the ship. The perpetrator entered the cabin of the general steward, pointed a knife at him and took his personal belongings. The alarm was raised immediately, and the perpetrator escaped via the mooring lines in an unmarked blue small motor banca stationed at the astern of the ship. The PSC personnel boarded the ship to verify the report and advised the master to file report with the Coast Guard Station (CGS) Batangas.
  2. On 20 Aug 20 at about 2021 hrs, bulk carrier, Vienna Wood, was anchored at Batangas Bay Anchorage Area. The duty roving crew was attacked by a perpetrator with a bolo (knife) when he was performing his duty. The duty crew tried to stop the perpetrator but accidentally grabbed the bolo, which resulted in a cut on his right palm. The perpetrator escaped empty-handed. The general alarm was raised immediately and first aid was administered to the injured crew. The incident was reported to the Port State Control (PSC) and the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG). The PSC Batangas and Coast Guard Station (CGS) Batangas responded to the incident but did not find any watercrafts or person within the ship's surroundings. The injured crew was evacuated and brought to a hospital for treatment. The master assessed that the perpetrator may have boarded the ship by throwing a line with hook.