The United Kingdom Hydrographic Office's (UKHO) security charts are designed to protect against risks, including piracy.
The two new Admiralty Maritime Security Charts, cover the waters around India and Southeast Asia, including the Malacca Straits.
These paper charts provide a single point of reference for recording the most up-to-date security information and, taken together with the UKHO’s three existing security and piracy charts, create the world’s first suite of security planning charts.
Admiralty Maritime Security Charts are designed to be used by ship personnel, shore-based managers and security specialists as a key voyage planning tool for recording the latest security-critical navigational information, which can be accessed for free via the UKHO’s Security Related Information to Mariners (SRIM) service, and for plotting any sightings or incidents that could pose a threat to security. This includes not just piracy but also other security threats, including armed robbery, embargoes, exclusion zones, illegal fishing and smuggling, as well as routing and reporting requirements put in place by military or security forces.
The Maritime Security Charts also provide instructions on the Voluntary Community Reporting (VCR) requirements, whereby merchant vessels operating in the VCR region of Southeast Asia and surrounding waters can report any maritime security issues or unusual behaviour.
Chris Parry MBE MA, Head of UK Fleet AWNIS Unit at the UK Ministry of Defence, commented: “The UKHO’s new Maritime Security Charts provide an important voyage planning tool for vessels traveling in and around Southeast Asia. Maritime security risks can take many forms and these charts allow vessel owners, operators and mariners to build up a record of maritime security information on a purpose-designed chart that can then serve as a valuable passage planning aid. The charts also contain vital information on how to prepare to enter waters with known security issues and the contact details for regional security centres in the event of any observed activity that gives rise to security concerns.”