DATE: 2023-04-20 07:30
LOCATION: Honduras – Offshore02
EVENT: Attempted Piracy
STOLEN ITEMS: N/A
SECURED: Does not apply
DETAILS: A yacht transiting north from Providencia, Colombia to Caymans traveled in stealth mode (no lights, AIS Tx) overnight and observed a large fishing vessel on radar. At 0730HRS at position 15° 16.095N 81° 12.270W, approximately 100 miles off the coast, they had visually sighted the large steel vessel to port and it was tracking back and forth in a small area. As the yacht continued on its northly course they noted the fishing vessel had altered course and was now moving on a parallel course but closing the gap. The vessel attempted VHF communications with a trailing buddy boat, and the fishing vessel repeatedly jammed their communications by continuously clicking over them. The buddy boats began using satellite texts. At a distance of about 1 mile the fishing vessel again altered course to intercept directly and put on speed, large amounts of dark smoke were now billowing from its exhaust. The buddy boat issued a pan pan, and the yacht activated their Iridium SOS feature and began voice communications with the emergency response team that included the USCG, Colombian Coast Guard, and the Nicaraguan military. None had assets in the immediate area but maintained continuous voice contact with the crew. The yacht put on all possible speed with sails and engine and turned sharply southeast, and the fishing vessel continued to follow at speed. At 8+knots the yacht was able to slowly increase the separation and after some time the fishing vessel gave up the pursuit, it remained in the area for several hours. Both yachts left the area and returned south.
A full report will be made by the crew at their next port of entry.