Monday 19th Feb, 2018

Shipping risk in southern Red Sea as war in Yemen rages

Image: NASA
Image: NASA

SEA mines and water-borne improvised explosive devices (WBIEDs) now pose an additional threat to shipping in the southern Red Sea.

That’s the verdict of an interim guidance on maritime security published by BIMCO, ICS and INTERTANKO as the war in Yemen continues to rage.

The European Union Naval Force (EUNAVFOR) and the Combined Maritime Forces have advised a range of threats other than piracy are potential risks in the area.

“We’ve been advised that these threats are real, and therefore decided to provide guidance for ships operating in the area,” said Angus Frew, BIMCO secretary general and chief executive.

“We have seen two incidents in January, and we want to make sure owners and operators are aware and advise their crews accordingly.”

He said it was important company security officers and ship masters were informed of these new threats.

The guidance stresses the need to use the Maritime Security Transit Corridor, to register with Maritime Security Centre – Horn of Africa and report to United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations.

ICS secretary general, Peter Hinchliffe said the guidance supported the activity of military forces in the region.

“That trade continues through these waters demonstrates shipping’s resilience in the face of such threats,” Mr Hinchcliffe said.

“The ability of the industry to successfully risk assess dynamic situations in cooperation with State resources and naval operations ensures the continued safety and security of maritime trade.”

INTERTANK marine director, Dr Phillip Belcher, said the guide would become a valuable planning tool for industry.

The industry document can be viewed online.

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