rss icon Subscribe
desktop mobile

Crew Kidnappings Surge 50% Off W. Africa

Image: IMB Piracy Reporting Centre (PRC)

Laxman Pai

Despite overall piracy incidents declining in 2019, there was an alarming increase in crew kidnappings across the Gulf of Guinea.

Number of crew kidnappings jumped from 78 in 2018 to 121 last year, according to the International Chamber of Commerce's International Maritime Bureau's (IMB) annual piracy report.

This equates to over 90% of global kidnappings reported at sea with 64 crew members kidnapped across six separate incidents in the last quarter of 2019 alone. The region accounted for 64 incidents including all four vessel hijackings that occurred in 2019, as well as 10 out of 11 vessels that reported coming under fire.

"We remain concerned that this region has recorded an unprecedented rise in crew kidnaps. These latest statistics confirm the importance of increased information exchange and coordination between vessels, reporting and response agencies in the Gulf of Guinea Region. Without the necessary reporting structures in place, we will be unable to accurately highlight the high-risk areas for seafarers and address the rise of piracy incidents in these persistently vulnerable waters," said Michael Howlett, Director of the ICC International Maritime Bureau.

In 2019, IMB's Piracy Reporting Center received 162 incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships worldwide, in comparison to 201 reported incidents in 2018.

The incidents included four hijacked vessels, 11 vessels fired upon, 17 attempted attacks, and 130 vessels boarded, according to the latest IMB figures. While the overall decline in piracy incidents is an encouraging development, vessels remain at risk in several regions, especially the Gulf of Guinea.

Jan 14, 2020

 

Piracy

Crew of Pacific Warden Released

Pacific Warden. Image: Swire Pacific Offshore Operations (Pte) Ltd

Offshore vessel operator Swire Pacific Offshore (SPO) has informed that seven of its crew members

ReCAAP ISC Alerts on Piracy in Singapore Strait

Approximate location of the three incidents in the eastbound lane of Singapore Strait on 20 December 2019. Map: ReCAAP ISC

Three ships were attacked by pirates in Singapore Strait early in the morning, and late at night

Asia Reports 8 Piracy Incidents in November

Map:  ReCAAP ISC

A total of eight incidents of armed robbery were reported against ships in Asia in November 2019

Safety & Security

It’s Time to Upgrade to a Marine Evacuation System

First deployment for USCG approval Cape Henlopen at Cape May Terminal. (Photo: CMLF)

As domestic traffic from coast-to-coast continues to worsen, ferry operators are seeing a steady

Search Called Off for Two Missing After Ship Collision

The stern of Pappy's Pride appears above the waterline beside the vessel's inflatable life raft after a collision with chemical tanker Bow Fortune in Galveston, Texas. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Station Galveston)

Responders have called off a search for two fisherman missing following a fatal ship collision

Are Foreign Ships Secure in Iran?

Image: Ports & Maritime Organization

Mohammad Rastad, Iran's Deputy Minister of Roads and Urban Development said that foreign trade

Maritime Apps