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Ship security today takes the form of protecting slow moving oil drilling equipment, private Superyachts, cargo and freight vessels, people on board, and even undersea cable laying projects. Working crews need anti-piracy operations training and ship security training to deal with modern and developing threats.
From an insurance perspective, Superyacht owners and maritime professionals understand risks have increased dramatically in recent years. Areas like Somalia, the West African Coast, the Gulf of Aden and South Mediterranean waters are as treacherous as ever. Recent developments see new piracy crews working the expansive Indian Ocean. In the Caribbean, the collapse in Venezuela’s economic security has seen destitute fisherman turning to piracy crime.
For luxury yacht owners, the risk in piracy seems to be a fast-moving, unpredictable threat. According the Telegraph, in one year piracy incidents in the Caribbean surged to 71 events in 2018, up from 21 incidents the previous year.
Working in ship security
What must be remembered is piracy is not just about theft, it is in many cases life-threatening. Hostage-taking and kidnap-for-ransom crimes are common. Gaining a detailed qualification in ship security is vital for those wanting to protect a multi-million-pound vessel and the lives within it. It’s important to train crews and in many cases, passengers, for all eventualities – including boarding with guns.
Training a crew to be vigilant, reactive and at times, overreactive means being able to identify ship vulnerabilities, and build an approach to securing the vessel.
Why ship security is important
Most people are unaware that shipping brings us 90% of world trade. Over 100,000 vessels out at sea at any one time, operate under varied governances, mainly concentrated near ports.
The International Ship and Port Facility Code (ISPS Code) requires stakeholders to invest in putting measures in place to enhance the security of ships and port facilities (since 9/11). Existing shipping technology can be hacked, making a crew’s knowledge of port operations vital, both for safe arrival at destination ports and cargo security.
Piracy crime continues to grow
Training maritime crews for any eventuality is important when considering piracy has existed since the 1600s. Today’s shifting economic situations in poorer countries provide fertile grounds for the continuing growth in piracy. Of concern is the style of criminal activity. Advanced weaponry and more sophisticated kidnap and ransom threats often combine with whole vessel theft resulting in mass loss of life.
Preparation is the only way to ensure you are as protected as possible from ship security threats. Training will help you react the right way in those valuable seconds at the start of an attack or identification of an incoming threat.
We offer a comprehensive 11 module Diploma in Ship Security which you can study independently through distance learning. If you would like to discuss this, or one of our other courses, please contact us to book a course today!