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Pirate Attack

Yes, Oceanographers Can Help Predict Piracy Attacks

The US Naval Meteorology & Oceanography Command named a 2013 Computerworld Honors Laureate for its counter-piracy predictive modelling. The Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command (NAVMETOCCOM) received the award for a modeling capability developed by Naval oceanographers at Stennis Space Center that predicts the likelihood of pirate attacks.

IDG's Computerworld Honors Program selected NAVMETOCCOM as a 2013 Laureate in the field of Safety and Security for its development of its Pirate Attack Risk Surface (PARS). The PARS model produces a forecast of shipping vulnerability due to piracy at a certain latitude, longitude, and time. A few short months before Somali pirates hijacked the U.S.-flagged MV Maersk Alabama in 2009, NAVMETOCCOM operators were asked to assist in the fight against piracy, which had been on the rise in the Somali Basin due to government instability in the region. Pirate attacks are a threat to the United States' national security and foreign policy, and they impact maritime safety, disrupt shipping and ultimately cost the world's economy billions of dollars annually. 

 Within two weeks, the command had developed the framework of the first-generation Piracy Performance Surface (PPS) model, which produced maps of probability of attack based on how environmental conditions influenced pirate small boat operations.


Piracy: Attacks Getting Bigger, Bolder

According to data released July 14, 2011, by the International Maritime Bureau, pirate attacks off Somalia and in the GoA/Indian Ocean region climbed dramatically in the first six months of this year. Figures reveal that there were 266 attacks on vessels in this period compared with 196 attacks in 2010. “In the last six months, Somali pirates attacked more vessels than ever before and they’re taking higher risks,” IMB director Pottengal Mukundan said


This Day in Naval History - July 21

From the Navy News Service 1823 - After pirate attack, Lt. David G. Farragut leads landing party to destroy pirate stronghold in . 1944 - Invasion and recapture of begins. 1946 - In first test of adaptability of jet aircraft to shipboard operations, XFD-1 Phantom makes landings and takeoffs without catapults from USS Franklin D. Roosevelt (CV 42). 1987 - Navy begins Operation Earnest Will, escorting first Kuwaiti tanker convoy in the


Economic Effects of Pirate Attacks

McQuilling Services, LLC, marine transport advisors, released a message addressing the economic impact of pirate attacks on tankers. Excerpt: “The recent pirate attack on the VLCC Sirius Star – 319,430 dwt built 2008 – that took place offshore Kenyan coast, has implied a new magnitude of possible security impacts on the tanker shipping markets. An increasing threat from the Somali pirates is present in that region and the additional insurance premiums are being paid by


Chairman Cummings Statement on Piracy Hearing

On Feb. 4, Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, released the statement below following today’s Subcommittee hearing on International Piracy and the High Seas: “While the term ‘pirate’ may for many conjure romantic images of swashbuckling adventurers, there is in fact nothing romantic about a poor individual from a failing state waiting in a small skiff to attack vulnerable cargo ships


LRAD Assisting in Fight Against Piracy

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American Technology Corporation (ATC) (NASDAQ:ATCO), a provider of directed sound products and technologies, announced that its LRAD systems are being used in increasing numbers as domestic and international military and maritime security forces escalate their efforts to combat 21st century piracy in the Gulf of Aden and off the Horn of Africa. American Technology created the Long Range Acoustic Device over eight years ago in response to the attack on the USS Cole.


Pirates Attack off Indonesia

Reuters has reported that pirates have attacked three ships, including two U.N.-chartered vessels and a Japanese bulk carrier, in Indonesian waters around the Malacca Strait in recent days, maritime and police officials said on Wednesday. Two attacks occurred on ships carrying relief material to tsunami-stricken Aceh province at the weekend, while a Japanese bulk carrier was targeted, reports said. In at least one of the weekend attacks, raiders were armed with AK-47 rifles


Pirates Attack EU NAVFOR Warship

Early the morning of March 17, two small skiffs made a fast approach on the EU NAVFOR Dutch HNLMS Tromp with what appeared to be a pirate attack. The Tromp fired warning shots as they approached and it was this action that alerted the “would be” pirates to the fact that they were trying to attack a well armed Naval warship.  The warship, HNLMS Tromp of the Royal Netherlands Navy, was patrolling the region as part of the ongoing EU counter-piracy mission


Pirates Reportedly Execute Seafarer, UN Anti-Piracy Action Plan

The United Nations (UN) issued a news release stating that Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is calling for a long-term strategy of deterrence, security, rule of law, and development to fight the scourge of piracy off the Somali coast. In announcing the launch of the World Maritime Day theme, IMO Secretary-General Efthimios Mitropoulos said: “We were appalled by yesterday’s news that pirates had executed, apparently in cold blood, a seafarer on the Beluga Nomination


Seafarer Voices: Piracy on the High Seas

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A YouTube video series describing pirate attacks.   Among discussions of anti-piracy measures in the Gulf of Aden and special courtrooms in the Seychelles and Mauritius, the maritime industry has begun to broach a gentler, less politically hot topic in the wake of 237 pirate attacks off coast of Somalia in 2011. What happens to seafarers, held often for months on end, after release from a pirate hijacking? Their untold stories comprise part of a video interview compilation by the


Spanish Vessel Joins Operation Atalanta

Photo: EU NAVFOR

EU Naval Force reported today that the Spanish Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV), ESPS Relámpago joined its force to perform counter-piracy patrols off the coast of Somalia. Contributing to Operation Atalanta, ESPS Relámpago is the new Spanish contribution in place of ESPS Tornado which


Pirate Activity Nil off Horn of Africa, Kidnappings in Gulf of Guinea

Kidnap location: Image OPINTEL

In its latest 'Piracy Analysis and Warning Weekly Report' OPINTEL inform of two kidnappings from tugboats on the coast of Nigeria; zero incidents off the Horn of Africa. Details as follows: Horn of Africa - Piracy Events Pirate and maritime crime activity in East African waters is at low


Security at Sea on Agenda at Upcoming SMM Hamburg

Image courtesy of SMM

At the forthcoming SMM maritime trade fair in Hamburg in September 2014 experts will present new security concepts for sea routes. Background Security at sea is improving: In recent months, pirate attacks on commercial ships have been repelled successfully with increasing frequency


MAS Debuts Exclusive Armor Systems

Photo: MAS

Following on from the continued success of the product, Marine Armor System (MAS) announced its global launch and updated website. MAS is a nonlethal vessel protection system based on ballistic blinds, protecting the vessel or rig against pirate attacks and other potential threats such as armed


Warship Helps Food Aid Reach Kismayo

Photo: EU NAVFOR

On Wednesday, December 11, Spanish EU Naval Force (EU NAVFOR) ship ESPS Tornado completed a three-day escort of a World Food Program (WFP) chartered vessel. The WFP ship was escorted by ESPS Tornado from Mombasa to the port of Kismayo in Somalia.


EU to Lead International Counter Piracy Efforts in 2014

From the January 1, 2014 the European Union will assume for one year the chairmanship of the Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS) with Maciej Popowski, Deputy Secretary General of the European External Action Service (EEAS) as EU chairperson


EU, Seychelles Conduct Counter-Piracy Exercise

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On Friday 10 January, the Seychelles Coast Guard, Air Force and Police Force, together with the EU Naval Force Somalia - Operation Atalanta and EUCAP Nestor, carried out a counter-­piracy exercise in the Seychelles. The exercise involved the boarding of a suspected pirate skiff that had


ICS Reports on Lessons from Somali Piracy

Peter Hinchliffe

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), a global trade association for shipowners, has issued a paper drawing upon the international shipping industry’s experience of Somali-based piracy during the period 2007 to 2013. “The intention is to identify lessons learned in order to


Cargo Ship Mistakenly Thought Pirates Boarding

Arrested ship: Photo courtesy of the owners

Eritrean forces in the Red Sea have boarded a merchant vessel that was in their territorial waters in an incident the crew initially reported as a pirate attack, reports Reuters. It was not immediately clear why the forces boarded the ship, the MV Marzooqah


Vessel Guards Thwart Somali Pirate Attack

Dryad Maritime Intelligence have today confirmed the first piracy attack of 2014 which saw an attack launched by Somali pirates south of Salalah in the late hours of January 17. The news comes hot on the heels of the latest International Maritime Bureau (IMB) annual report on piracy and maritime


Missing Tanker Found; Account of Pirate Attack Disputed

M/T Kerala vanished on January 18 off Angola; Angolan Navy says hijacking faked. The Angolan Navy is claiming that the crew of an oil tanker reported missing off its coast on Jan. 18 were part of faked pirate attack. Separately, a regional security expert who declined to be named for the


Drum Cussac Security Business up in 2013

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Drum Cussac's maritime security market share grew by 50 percent in 2013   In the second half of 2013, the number of secured transits conducted by Drum Cussac, using both armed and un-armed security consultants, was 16% up on the same period in 2012.


Setting the Course Awards Banquet

Seafarers & International House will hold its 14th annual Setting the Course awards banquet the at the New York Athletic Club on Tuesday evening, April 22, 2014 to honor Donald J. Marcus, Edward R. Morgan and Captain Richard P. Phillips as the 2014 Outstanding Friends of Seafarers.


Hijacked Tanker Returns Minus $8M of Diesel

MT Kerala (Photo: Greek World Reporter)

Reuters - An oil tanker hijacked for a week off Angola in January has been returned to the country's authorities, a board member at state oil firm Sonangol said on Tuesday, adding that the hijackers had stolen diesel worth $8 million from the ship.


IMB Warns of West Africa Piracy Threat

Parate arrest: Photo credit EUNAVFOR

The ICC International Maritime Bureau is asking ships to be extra vigilant when transiting West Africa as piracy in the region becomes a growing concern. Since the beginning of the year, one vessel, MT Kerala, has been hijacked and six were boarded in West Africa


 
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