Oct 292010

image ReCAAP has issued a report on theft of MGO fuel from the Singapore-registered tug Surya Putra 5 on 24 October. Piracy against tugs appears to have risen significantly in the area over the past year.

Surya Putra 5 was underway approximately 8 nm east of Selat Berhala, Indonesia (1° 01.4′ S, 104°
29.40’ E) when two boats with 11 robbers armed with knives and parangs came alongside.

The robbers demanded Marine Gas Oil (MGO) from the crew and threatened them when they expressed reluctance to give in as they may not have enough fuel left to reach their destination Palembang, Indonesia. Later, the robbers prevailed and escaped in their boats taking with them three drums of MGO. The crew was not injured. No personal belonging of the crew was stolen.

The ship manager of the vessel reported the incident to ReCAAP ISC and  Singapore’s Port Operations Control Centre (POCC), which is also the ReCAAP Focal Point (Singapore).

This is the second incident that was reported in the vicinity of Selat Berhala. On 30 Sep 10, Surya Ratna 7 while towing barge Surya Makmut 7 was boarded by 12 robbers armed with knives. The armed robbers tried to enter the tug boat’s crew accommodation but were unsuccessful. The robbers then disembarked on their fast boat and proceeded to board the barge where they stole ship’s store such as lifebuoy lights and mooring ropes before escaping.
Comments by ReCAAP ISC

Says ReCAAP ISC: “Ship masters, especially low free board vessels /tugs transiting the area to take necessary precautions and exercise vigilance at all times and exercise adequate boarding protection measures in tune with the BMPs. If possible the vessels are advised to avoid transiting closer to land. Ship masters are also advised to report all actual and attempted incidents to the Coastal State

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