With more ships calling the Philippines this year to carry out crew changes there has been a concurrent rise in robberies onboard ships.
The Singapore Navy’s Information Fusion Centre has highlighted a significant growth this year in what is describes as opportunistic robberies at the Philippine capital, Manila, as well as in Batangas to the south.
Robbers – often armed with knives – have been targeting ships that are anchored or berthed with a low freeboard.
In most cases at ports, the perpetrators were discovered on the upper deck, having climbed up the vessels through the mooring lines, and had targeted ship’s equipment and personal belongings. Meanwhile, perpetrators in small boats approaching vessels outside the port tend to use a line with a hook to climb to anchored vessels.
“The similarity of incidents suggests the same person or group of perpetrators may again try to conduct these kinds of attacks in the near future if the situation permits,” the Singaporean navy warned.