- Two tankers registered under Republic of Marshall Islands and Republic of Panama flag were attacked on 13 June 2019 while underway in the Gulf of Oman.
- Following the attacks against tankers, Republic of Marshall Islands (RMI) has issued ship security advisory no. 07-19 (copy attached) recommending precautions to be taken by RMI flagged vessels while transiting Persian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz And Gulf of Oman. The advisory should be considered complimentary to previously issued ship security advisory no. 05-19.
- The recommended precautions by the Administration for ships in these areasStrait of Hormuz, and Gulf of Oman as below:
- Implement security measures equivalent to Ship Security Level 2.
- Tankers in ballast condition should purge cargo tanks of hydrocarbons prior to entering the region to reduce the risk of explosion.
- Undertake a new ship and voyage-specific threat assessment before entering any region where there has been an incident or if the threat has changed.
- After performing the risk assessment, review the Ship Security Plan and amend if necessary.
- Review section 2 of Best Management Practice 5th Edition (BMP5), which outlines threats.
- Maintain a full and vigilant bridge watch.
- Maintain a strict watch and establish communication with all vessels coming close.
- Ensure strict boarding controls are in place.
- Only lower accommodation gangways or ladders when necessary.
- Rig outboard lighting where possible, provided they do not interfere with keeping a safe lookout, particularly over the stern, and rig/use searchlights if available.
- Monitor relevant VHF and other communication channels.
- Check all fire-fighting equipment is available for immediate use. Make sure the emergency fire pump is available if any maintenance is being undertaken.
- Keep the Automatic Information System (AIS) and Long-Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT) systems on. There is no need to complete the field stating the last or next port of call.
- Administration has also recommended following safety measures related to visual checks of hull:
- Undertake a visual search from the deck, all around the vessel to check for anything attached to the hull of the vessel. Particular attention should be paid to the hull at the waterline.
- Conduct regular rounds of the upper deck.
- If a vessel detects anything unusual attached to the hull, then it should contact the United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) Dubai or Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) Bahrain and the flag State immediately. All crew should be evacuated from the immediate area and mustered in a safe place.
- Vessels should follow the advice of the military authorities.
- In case alerted to suspicious activity while at anchorage in the above-mentioned areas, operators are advised to take additional measures as follows:
- Rotate the propeller continuously or at short, irregular intervals.
- Operate bow and stern thrusters at zero (0) thrust.
- Turn the rudder frequently.
- Switch the echo sounder to transmit counter/combat swimmer/diver threat.
- All RMI flagged vessels are advised to use following contact details to report any security incident and suspicious activity:
- RMI flagged vessels are advised to report any incidents immediately to Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) Bahrain on VHF Channel 16, the U.S. Navy 5th Fleet Battle Watch via phone at +973-1785-3879 or by email at CUSNC.BWC@ME.NAVY.MIL.
- UKMTO may also be contacted in the event of a security incident or suspicious activity at +442392 222060 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- All security incident and suspicious activities must be reported by RMI-flagged commercial vessels to the RMI Maritime Administrator at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Ship owners/ operators and masters are advised to take note of above and exercise extreme caution when operating in these areas.
- RMI Ship Security Advisory no. 07-19
This Technical Circular and the material contained in it is provided only for the purpose of supplying current information to the reader and not as an advice to be relied upon by any person. While we have taken utmost care to be as factual as possible, readers/ users are advised to verify the exact text and content of the Regulation from the original source/ issuing Authority.