Robberies forced into their way into a vessel anchoring at Callao anchorage in Peru.

Around 2 a.m. the crew who stationed on the bridge wing for security watch noticed some noise from the forward part of the vessel. They sounded the vessel’s whistle for warning and found 2 robbers jumped into the sea.

Seemingly the robbers approached the vessel with the unlighted small boat and boarded the vessel via anchor chain. Although the anchor chain hawsepipe was locked with the plate, it was found that the bolts were unscrewed.

Though the bosun store doors were found to be partly broken, fortunately, there were no personal injury and no property loss in the above case.

Furthermore, the Japan Club obtained the following advice/information from INTERLOG Servicios S.A.C:

  • All vessels at anchorage shall keep good watch on deck (with special attention to forecastle and poop decks) in order to detect any approach from small boats.
  • Adequate lighting to be arranged on deck and around vessel’s hull (cargo lights).
  • Although the thieves are usually not confronting and only approach vessels when they see lack of security, the last reported incidents involved the use of short guns and knives.
  • Mooring ropes shall be secured or kept inside lockers if same will not be employed at port.
  • Vessel to use search light from time to time whilst at anchor, to explore vessel’s neighbour areas.
  • Pilot ladder and accommodation ladder to be hoisted at all times at anchorage.
  • Vessels to contact TRAMAR Callao (or “Costera Callao”) every 30 or 40 minutes to confirm that vessel is keeping good watch (thieves usually monitoring coastal radio exchanges with vessels).
  • In case of any small boat spotted approaching vessel, call “Costera Callao” or “TRAMAR Callao” informing of suspicious movements in order to have a port patrol vessel deployed.
  • According to Callao Harbour Master office, laden vessels and vessels having lack of security are most likely to be approached at anchorage.  They also warn that vessels could be approached by the stern when slowing speed or manoeuvring to drop anchors, when thieves could try to hook one or two ropes and slack them overboard to their boats and escape.
  • Therefore, good watch and lighting of vessels during stays overnight at anchor is required.