ReCAAP ISC issues Incident Alert on Incidents against Ships in the eastbound lane of Singapore Strait

(Image Courtesy: ReCAAP ISC)

The incidents of armed robbery against ships continued to occur to ships while underway in the Singapore Strait. During 8 – 11 Apr 21, three incidents (two incidents on 8 Apr and one incident on 11 Apr) were reported on board ships while underway in the eastbound lane of the Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) in the Singapore Strait. The three incidents occurred in close proximity to each other (Tanjung Pergam, Pulau Bintan, Indonesia) and in particular, two incidents on 8 Apr occurred within an interval of four hours.

The perpetrators were sighted in the engine room in one of the incidents on 8 Apr and the incident on 11 Apr. Engine spares were reported stolen in the incident on 11 Apr and nothing was reported stolen in the other two incidents. In one of the incidents on 8 Apr, the perpetrator confronted the engine room crew and hit him on his head when the crew attempted to shout for assistance. There was no confrontation between the crew and the perpetrators in the other two incidents.

The ReCAAP ISC is concerned with the continued occurrence of incidents in the Singapore Strait in 2021. A total of 10 incidents were reported during January-April 2021, comprising nine incidents in the eastbound lane of the TSS and one incident in the westbound lane. In 2020, a total of 34 incidents were reported in the Singapore Strait.

Although there was an arrest of five perpetrators in the Singapore Strait by the Indonesian Navy on 21 Feb 21, incidents have continued to occur in the area. This suggests that there are other criminal groups operating in the Singapore Strait. The ReCAAP ISC urges the littoral States to increase patrols and enforcement in their respective waters as well as strengthen coordination among the littoral States, including information sharing on the latest situation, and the criminal groups involved, in order to make more arrests of the perpetrators.

As the perpetrators of these incidents are not arrested, there is a possibility of further incidents in the Singapore Strait. All ships are advised to exercise enhanced vigilance, adopt extra precautionary measures and report all incidents immediately to the nearest coastal State. “Ship masters and crew are advised to keep abreast of the latest situation (at and tune-in to advisories and navigational broadcasts announced by the littoral States,” ReCAAP ISC stated.

Sea News, April 12

Baibhav Mishra
Author: Baibhav Mishra

Associate Editor, Sea News