Royal Thai Navy reports piracy incident of West Malaysia
The ReCAAP ISC received a report about a piracy incident occurred on a Thai-flagged Product Tanker MGT 1.
The tanker was underway from Rayong port, Thailand to Andaman sea where the incident took place at about 2100 hrs on 6 Sep 17 at 54 nm east of Kuala Dungun, Kuala Terengganu, West Malaysia, at position 5° 8.37’ N 104° 16.62’ E.
Initial investigation revealed that 13 armed perpetrators with two small fast boats boarded the tanker and forced the crew to transfer one million litres of diesel oil (out of 2.2 million litres contained in the tanker) to a mother ship.
The crew managed to activate the SSAS alarm. The Malaysia Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) dispatched two ships and a helicopter to the location and rescued the tanker at 04:00 hrs on 7 Sep 17.
Ten perpetrators were apprehended and search for the remaining three perpetrators is on-going. The tanker is now being escorted to Kuala Terengganu for further investigation.
This is the second incident involving theft of oil cargo reported in Asia in 2017. The last incident was the hijack of product tanker C.P. 41 for oil cargo theft that occurred on 23 June 2017 approximately 25 nm east of Kuantan, West Malaysia.
The ReCAAP ISC is concerned about the recurrence of incidents of hijacking of ship for theft of oil cargo. Ships carrying oil cargo are encouraged to exercise vigilance and adopt precautionary measures taking reference from the ‘Regional Guide to Counter Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia’.