Bulk Carrier Master Injured In Robbery On The Way To Singapore

A bulk carrier was travelling to Singapore on October 27 when there was an attempt to rob it early that morning in the Malacca Strait, just outside Singaporean territorial waters.

The third engineer was taken hostage and tied up by armed individuals who had boarded the ship.

Robbery
Credit: Lloyd’s List / Twitter

The robbers fled with stolen spare parts after the duty oiler sounded the alarm. The crew information and ship’s name had not been disclosed.

After being transported ashore for medical attention, the wounded shipmaster is said to be in stable condition.

The incident was reported to the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) at 4:30 a.m. local time on the same day, according to a report from the Maritime & Port Authority of Singapore (MPA).

The Police Coast Guard ordered the ship to anchor off the western coast of Singapore so they could conduct a search, but nothing was reported missing.

The event draws attention to ongoing security issues in the area.

Shipmasters were previously warned by the Information Fusion Centre (IFC), a regional maritime security centre, to keep an eye out for wooden boats in the Singapore Strait that could be used by pirates or sea robbers.

Typically, these boats have narrow, open decks and hulls with flat bottoms.

At the beginning of 2023, there were 37 incidents reported in the Singapore Strait, up from 20 in 2021 and 27 the year before, according to the IFC’s mid-year report.

These incidents are caused by a number of factors, such as a sluggish recovery of the regional economy, low fishing yields that negatively impact fishermen’s livelihoods, and higher financial obligations during holiday seasons.

The IFC claims that the Phillip Channel was the scene of the majority of incidents.

References- Container News, Seatrade Maritime

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