France pulls vessel from West Coast maritime security mission due to coronavirus

The French Navy has suspended its Mission Corymbe off West Africa due to the COVID-19 coronavirus, and withdrawn a vessel from the area.

The patrol vessel Lieutenant de Vaisseau Le Henaff, which departed Brest on 3 March for West Africa, returned to France at the end of the month. During its return voyage it stopped in Conakry and Dakar.

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Source: defenceweb.co.za

New Best Management Practice guidance released for Gulf of Guinea

In response to ongoing maritime security issues in the Gulf of Guinea, maritime organisations including BIMCO, INTERCARGO, INTERTANKO and the ICS, in conjunction with international P&I Clubs and military advisers, have created new guidance for shipping.

Best Management Practices to Enhance Maritime Security for Vessels & Mariners Operating Off the Coast of West Africa including the Gulf of Guinea (BMP WA), is a mouthful, but is essential reading for anyone transiting the region. It follows similar guidance documents for the Indian Ocean and should be considered the de facto guide for maritime security guidance in the region.

To download BMP WA, please click here.

Coronavirus: US Navy captain pleads for help over outbreak

The captain of a US aircraft carrier carrying more than 4,000 crew has called for urgent help to halt a coronavirus outbreak on his ship.

Scores of people on board the Theodore Roosevelt have tested positive for the infection. The carrier is currently docked in Guam.

“We are not at war. Sailors do not need to die,” Captain Brett Crozier wrote in a letter to the Pentagon.

Captain Crozier recommended quarantining almost the entire crew.

In the letter Captain Crozier said that with large numbers of sailors living in confined spaces on the carrier isolating sick individuals was impossible.

The coronavirus’ spread was now “ongoing and accelerating”, he warned, in the letter dated 30 March.

“Decisive action is needed,” he said.

“Removing the majority of personnel from a deployed US nuclear aircraft carrier and isolating them for two weeks may seem like an extraordinary measure. This is a necessary risk.”

It is not clear how many crew members on the Theodore Roosevelt have the coronavirus. The San Francisco Chronicle, which first reported on the letter, said at least 100 sailors were infected.

Speaking to Reuters news agency, a US Navy spokesman said the service was “moving quickly to take all necessary measures to ensure the health and safety of the crew of USS Theodore Roosevelt”.

Source: bbc.co.uk

IMSC Enforces Safety Measures to Protect Members from COVID-19

Photo By NAVCENT Public Affairs | 200330-N-NO146-1002 MANAMA Bahrain (March 30, 2020) Service members assigned to the International Maritime Security Construct (IMSC) practice social distancing in the workspace. The IMSC ensures freedom of navigation and free flow of commerce in international waters throughout the Arabian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz, the Bab el-Mandeb Strait, and the Gulf of Oman.

MANAMA, BAHRAIN

03.30.2020

Courtesy Story

The International Maritime Security Construct (IMSC) has been practicing several safety precautions to promote the health and safety of all its members with the recent COVID-19 outbreak.

No members of the IMSC have fallen ill to COVID-19 as of current.

“The well-being of IMSC personnel is critical to our mission,” said Commodore James Parkin, commander of Combined Task Force Sentinel, headquartered in Bahrain. “However, with a pandemic such as this, our people become the mission. We must ensure good health for the sake of their families and each other.”

Personnel supporting IMSC headquarters typically work in close quarters, however, as the need for social distancing has increased, so have the rules for how the day-to-day operations are conducted.

“Our operational tempo remains constant,” said Parkin. “fortunately our ships are unaffected and their mission continues. On shore, we have rescheduled meetings for mission-critical members only, reconfigured our work stations to allow a six-foot distance, and pay particular attention to the cleanliness of work stations and personal hygiene.”

Hand sanitizer, bleach wipes, anti-viral cleaning sprays, and soap and water are readily available throughout the work area. The team breaks at least four times per day to conduct cleaning stations.

The Multi-national, British-led IMSC deploys advanced capabilities through the region as part of a surveillance and detection effort, leading to de-escalation and deterrence through transparency. The IMSC ensures freedom of navigation and free flow of commerce in international waters throughout the Arabian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz, the Bab el-Mandeb Strait, and the Gulf of Oman.

Source: dvidshub.net

Abu Sayyaf team heads towards Malaysia on the hunt for kidnap targets

Sabah

Sam Chambers

The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) Piracy Reporting Centre has been alerted by Malaysian intelligence that an Abu Sayyaf kidnap for ransom group left Jolo Island in the far south of the Philippines, yesterday destined for Sabah, Malaysia.

Security consultants Ambrey suggest the target area is understood to be around Felda Sahabat and Tambisan.

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Source: splash247.com

Covid-19: Nigerian regulator asks for offshore workforce reduction

Nigeria’s Department of Petroleum Resources has instructed oil and gas firms to reduce the workforce on offshore platforms. The measure is part of the government’s plans to contain the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus in the country.

The restrictions come after the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) announced six workers on the Siem Marlin offshore rig were diagnosed with Covid-19 late last week, according to Reuters.

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Source: offshore-technology.com

Ship escapes pirate attack south of Bonny Island

Liberia-flagged containership MV Lana escaped pirate attack on Friday while sailing south of Bonny Island, Nigeria.

A skiff with six people on board attacked the ship and fired shots at the vessel, according to Dryad Global. The attack took place 99 nautical miles south off Bonny Island, and 30 nautical miles south-east from the Engine Terminal.

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Source: shipsandports.com.ng