Join Date: May 2007
Location: Boerne, Tx
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One week ago today I had the privalege of listening to a gentleman who is both a member of the management team, and an operator of a firm in San Antonio which puts men aboard vessels to prevent them from being taken by pirates. He made a number of interesting points.
First if the pirates are already on board your vessel the situation is very difficult if not impossible to deal with. Second, if a "resuce vessel" is only a few miles away when they recieve a distress call, it probably is already too late, given the time necessary for the rescue vessel to load their crew, power up, get underway, and get there. Thirdly, the pirates are not only after money, but also after the prestige when they get back to their villages. He put it "money, position, and the girls. He remarked the pirates are incredibly fast in actually boarding a vessel. In just a short minute or two they go from a dozen yards off to being over the rails and on board. In other words, revention of boarding must be taken before the pirates are alongside.
His firms plicy is three shots. First a general warning shot (a air burst), second a warning shot across the bows, and then no messing around, the third shot is for effect. All members of their on board crews have performed well under fire. A team consists of 4 men.
Their business is growing. Their only advertising is word of mouth. The least cooperative/supportive government is the USA. They are therefore in the process of establishing offshore bases.
I have attempted to report as accurately as possible some of the comments of a man who has been there, done that, and is going back for more. Perhaps becasuse his wife accompanied him, he graciously declined to share any specific stories, though he did have a number of interesting slides.
He did state that when a crew boaarded a vessel which had crew who had benefited from having a protective crew on board before, the protective crew had very little work to do, as the vessel crew voluntarily took over welding in place the protective measures.