Security Forces on a Rescue Mission
IMR Pirate Reporting said over the weekend that about 6 pirates attempted to forcefully board an oil tanker off Brass, in the Gulf of Guinea near to Nigeria. The report claimed the pirates made over a dozen attempts to enter the vessel using a long aluminum ladder which they tried to hook on to the vessel railings without success.
It was reported that the ship captain and crew on noticing the pirates did a good job of maneuvering the ship and making the ship to move in a zigzag manner thus preventing the ladder from being hook onto the ship. The pirates out of frustration fire on the ship before moving away.
Oil Tanker Off the Coast of Benin
While this was happening, the Master of the ship raised the alarm, activated SSAS, transmitted distress message, and increased speed, while the crew secured all access doors. The incident was said to have occurred in the morning hours while the oil tanker ship was in the Gulf Of Guinea about 25 nautical miles off the coast of Nigeria. The distress call to the Nigerian Naval command prompted a dispatch of a naval security boat which arrived later to find the crew and tanker safe.
Meanwhile, an oil products tanker has been declared missing off the coast of Benin raising fear of a pirate attack. The tanker said to be managed by a ship product management firm Anglo Eastern is reported to have lost contact with the parent company since the 1st of February 2018.
Pirates being Arrested by Security Forces
The 45,898 dwt oil product tanker Marine Express was at the Cotonou Anchorage when it was last contacted. The vessels are said to be carrying 22 crew members on board and was laden with about 13,500 tons of gasoline.
The vessel’s company said all the appropriate authorities have been informed of the situation as well as the families of the 22 crew members. The Cotonou Benin anchorage is fast having a reputation of pirates infested port with the recent hijacked of 22 crew members of another oil tanker a Marshall island Flagged Tanker MT Barret owned by Union Marine.
Though the tanker was later released after a six-day ordeal, it is rumoured that it was released after a hefty ransom was paid to the pirates who hijacked it.