DATE: 2018-03-29 04:00
Country Name: Trinidad/Tobago
Location Detail: Trinidad Hibiscus Gas Platform
EVENT: Suspicious Activity
Stolen Items: None
DETAILS: During a night transit from Chaguaramas, Trinidad to Grenada at 0400 hours and approximately 6 nm South of the Hibiscus gas platform, a boat about a mile ahead and slightly off to port of the yachts track suddenly switched on an array of nonstandard lights, including a flashing red/green light, and two or three hand held lights. The yachts crew were monitoring VHF 16 and could not determine what this boat was doing or its intentions.
After a while they passed it port side to at about a quarter of a mile. The boat then motored around astern of the yacht, and began to follow, gradually closing to about 100yds astern over the next 20 minutes. Once it became clear they were being followed, the yacht went dark, all navigation lights and other visible lighting were doused. Defensive equipment was made ready on deck, and full speed on engine and full sail was made, approximately 7kts.
After an additional 20 minutes the suspect vessel dropped back, and once far enough away, the yacht changed course 60 degrees with intermittent further changes over time to make themselves more difficult to find, and to keep well clear of the normal Hibiscus direct route to Grenada. The crew had no doubt they had been checked out as a possible target for attack, and a full report was made to TTCG.
UPDATE 2018/04/22: CSSN has recently added a new category, Suspicious Activity, and this incident has been reclassified from Attempted Piracy to Suspicious Activity.
CSSN NOTE: Reminder, for those planning this passage there are several important and helpful resources available on the CSSN website. Review Prior piracy incidents in this area using the dedicated Piracy Zoom-Tap, Know & Go interactive map. Review the Piracy Precautions specific to this passage, and file a float plan by email with TTCG/YSATT.Follow Us Share