Maintenance window scheduled to begin at February 14th 2200 est. until 0400 est. February 15th


Forgot Password?

    Defense Visual Information Distribution Service Logo

    Combined Maritime Forces Urge Mariners To Be Vigilant, Use Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor With End of Monsoon Season

    MANAMA, Bahrain - The Combined Maritime Forces are urging mariners to heed an advisory warning issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Maritime Administration Sept. 9 warning that piracy attacks off the Horn of Africa and in the Indian Ocean will likely increase now that the monsoon season has ended.

    High sea states in the Somali Basin during the monsoon season were a significant factor that resulted in fewer attacks on vessels transiting the area. The advisory warns mariners not to use routes where attacks have taken place and to take defensive measures including traveling at "maximum sustainable speed through high threat areas."

    The CMF is urging vessels to use the Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor when transiting the Gulf of Aden. Combined Task Force 151 coordinates closely with the European Union, NATO, and independent naval forces from China, Russia, India, and Malaysia to provide a robust presence in the Gulf of Aden and the IRTC.

    "It's our duty as professional sailors to keep the global waterways safe for trade and passage," said U.S. Navy Rear Adm. Scott Sanders, Commander, CTF 151. "We pledge to continue building international cooperation to stem the flow of piracy. Establishing and maintaining cooperative security in the Gulf of Aden and the Somali Basin is the true key to success against piracy."

    However, while more than 30 ships and aircraft from 17 nations continue to patrol the waters off the Somali coast, the closest military ship or aircraft may not be close enough to instantly render assistance to a vessel under attack.

    When using the IRTC, vessels are advised to maintain a strict 24-hour lookout and use evasive maneuvers in the event of an attack.

    "In this environment, the importance of merchant mariners as first line defenders against pirates is absolutely vital," said Commodore Tim Lowe, deputy commander, Combined Maritime Forces. "The crews of those merchant vessels that have employed evasive maneuvering and other defensive measures to protect their ships and their cargoes have proven to be more successful
    at evading attack, and providing time for military assets to assist."

    Statistics recorded since January 2009 have shown that evasive maneuvers performed by vessels have prevented 88 hijacking attempts by pirates.

    "We are pleased with the effects that a number of shipping companies are taking to defend their vessels and their crews; they are working," said Royal Navy Capt. Keith Blount, deputy commander, CTF 151.

    CTF 151 is a multinational task force established to conduct counter piracy operations under a mission-based mandate throughout the Gulf of Aden, Somali Basin, Indian Ocean, and Red Sea to actively deter, disrupt and suppress piracy in order to protect global maritime security and secure freedom of navigation for the benefit of all nations.



    Date Taken: 09.10.2009
    Date Posted: 09.10.2009 10:46
    Story ID: 38547
    Location: MANAMA, BH 

    Web Views: 309
    Downloads: 283