In its weekly report for 22-28 September, ReCAAP ISC informed of two incidents of armed robbery against ships in Asia. Both were CAT 4 incidents that occurred onboard bulk carriers.
Of the two incidents, one incident occurred on 23 Sep onboard the ship while underway in the eastbound lane of the Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) in the Singapore Strait.
The other incident occurred on 14 Jun on board the ship while anchored at Vung Tau Anchorage, Vietnam.
Both incidents were reported to ReCAAP ISC after verification by the ReCAAP Focal Point and Contact Point.
The first incident involves the Hong Kong-flagged bulk carrier Uni Blossom, approximately 3.5 nm northeast of Pulau Nongsa, Indonesia in the eastbound lane of the TSS in the Singapore Strait.
The Chief Engineer discovered some engine spare parts missing when he was conducting his round in the engine room at about 0200 hrs on 23 September. However, there was no perpetrator. The master could not determine when the actual boarding took place.
As the engine room was manned till 0001 hrs on 23 Sep, the incident was assessed to have occurred between 0001 hrs and 0200 hrs.
The crew was safe. The master reported the incident via email to Singapore Port Operations Control Centre (POCC) on 25 Sep. A safety navigational broadcast was initiated.
The Republic of Singapore Navy’s (RSN) Maritime Security Task Force (MSTF), Singapore Police Coast Guard, and the Indonesian authorities were notified. The ship was en-route to China.
The second incident involves the Hong Kong-flagged bulk carrier Osaka Bay, in June 2020.
While at anchor at Vung Tau Anchorage, Vietnam, an unknown number of perpetrators boarded the ship unnoticed.
They stole paint cans from the paint store (located in forecastle of ship) and escaped. There was no injury to crew.
The ReCAAP ISC urges ship master and crew to report all incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships to the nearest coastal State and flag State, exercise vigilance and adopt relevant preventive measures taking reference from the Regional Guide to Counter Piracy and Armed Robbery Against Ships in Asia.