Singapore - Singapore anti-piracy watchdog ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre (ReCAAP ISC) reported 10 incidents of robberies onboard ships in January 2015, a slight increase as compared with eight incidents in January 2014. According to the report, two of the 10 incidents were classified as Category 1 (CAT 1) - very significant incidents, three were Category 2 (CAT 2) - moderately significant incidents, one was a Category 3 (CAT 3) - less significant incident, and four were petty theft or minimum significant incidents.
The two CAT 1 incidents involved chemical tankers carrying fuel and one of them was later apprehended by the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA). However, the second incident that involved the hijacking of tanker MT Rehobot is still missing to date. Meanwhile, ReCAAP ISC stated in its report that the incidents of fuel siphoning were on the decline as there were not many successful siphoning cases reported since November 2014.
The anti-piracy watchdog attributed the decline on the emphasis of timely reporting by the shipping industry, vigilance exercised by master and crew, enhanced enforcement, and speedy responses by authorities. ReCAAP ISC also noticed almost half of the incidents reported in January 2015 occurred onboard bulk carriers, container ships, and tugboats towing barges while underway in the Traffic Separation Scheme of the Straits of Malacca and Singapore. ReCAAP ISC continues to reiterate the practice of extra vigilance for master and crew operating in the vicinity.
(Source: IHS 360)