Weekly Piracy Update: Nigerian kidnapping, Somali pirates quiet

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March 1, 2012

Monthly Piracy Incidents by Region – FEB 23-29

West Africa

NIGERIA: Refrigerated cargo ship boarded on 28 February while anchored at position 04:12 N – 006:56 E, 3 nm from Fairway Buoy Port Harcourt. Eight pirates armed with guns boarded the ship from a small wooden boat and started firing toward the bridge and galley areas. The pirates ransacked the ship and stole crew cash, personal effects, and ship’s cash and property. They took hostage the Ship’s Master and Chief Engineer and escaped. The ship informed the local authorities through the agents and sailed to a safe distance without the presence of Master and Engineer aboard. One crew wounded and one other crewman remains unaccounted for. (IMB)

IVORY COAST: Offshore supply ship boarded on 26 February while anchored at 05:16 N – 004:01 W, Abidjan Inner Anchorage 9. Three robbers in a canoe, armed with knives, boarded from the port side main deck. One robber threatened the watch man with a knife while the other two took a pressure washer and they left the ship. The alarm was raised and Port Control was informed. After a short while a harbor police patrol boat came and returned the stolen item. No injuries and no damage to the vessel were reported. (IMB)

Southeast Asia    

BANGLADESH: Container ship boarded on 29 February while anchored at position 21:44 N – 091:37 E, 12 nm west of Kutubdia Island. Robbers were able to board the ship and steal ship’s stores and escape unnoticed. Master informed port authority and local agent. (IMB)

INDONESIA: Chemical tanker boarded on 23 February while under pilotage at position 03:23N – 099:27E: Kuala Tanjung Anchorage. Duty engineer raised alarm when he saw robbers holding an engineering crewman hostage and stealing spare parts. Pilot informed port authorities. Seeing crew alertness the robbers escaped in a waiting boat. During the incident the hostage was tied up, slapped and kicked and required medical attention. (IMB)

Weather Forecast

10 Day Weather Conditions and Small Boat Operations Capabilities

GULF OF ADEN: Moderate conditions will persist throughout the period. Expect easterly winds of 10 – 15 knots, decreasing to 5 – 10 knots by 3 Mar, and seas of 2 – 4 feet. EXTENDED FORECAST: Winds will maintain easterly at 10 – 15 knots and seas of 1 – 3 feet.

SOMALI COAST: Northeast monsoonal flow off the Somali coast continues to produce moderate to severe impacts in the area. Expect northeasterly winds 15 – 20 knots with gusts to 30 knots near thunderstorm activity and seas of 4 – 6 feet. EXTENDED FORECAST: Winds will maintain northeasterly speed of 15 – 20 knots, and seas of 4 – 6 feet.

NORTH ARABIAN SEA: Northwesterly winds 10 – 15 knots and seas of 2 – 4 feet. EXTENDED FORECAST: Northwesterly winds 10 – 15 knots and seas of 2 – 4 feet.

CENTRAL AFRICAN COAST/INDIAN OCEAN: Residual swell waves from the southern Somali Basin region continue to impact the area but overall conditions will remain moderate, with northeasterly winds 15 – 20 knots and seas of 3 – 5 feet. EXTENDED FORECAST: Small boat operations off the Tanzanian and Kenyan coasts will have marginal impacts as northeasterly winds will maintain 15 – 20 knots and seas will be 5 – 7 feet.

MOZAMBIQUE CHANNEL: Expect southwesterly winds in the northern channel of 5 – 10 knots, and seas of 2 – 4 feet. In the southern channel there will be southeasterly winds of 5 – 10 knots, and seas of 4 – 6 feet. EXTENDED FORECAST: In the northern channel winds will remain southwesterly at 13 – 18 knots with seas of 2 – 4 feet. In the southern channel there will be southeasterly winds of 13 – 18 knots, and seas of 8 – 11 feet will decrease to 5 – 7 feet.

SURFACE CURRENTS: Currents within the Somalia Basin, Gulf of Aden, and into the Indian Ocean remain variable with most areas having average speeds of less than 1.5 knots. An area of increased current speeds exists along the Somali coast, continuing south off the northern Kenya coastline until about 5 degrees south. This northeast to southwest current is moving along the coastline at speeds up to 3 knots. The Mozambique Channel has an average current of 1 – 2 knots.

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