Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Lightning Almost Strikes Twice

Maersk Alabama Sees Off Pirate Attack
Shipping News Feature

INDIAN OCEAN – The Maersk Alabama, the ship seized in April of this year by Somali pirates, has fought off another attack today according to the US Navy.

The Alabama was attacked some 560 nautical miles off of the northeast coast of the blighted African country by four men in a skiff equipped with automatic weapons.

However, they were driven off by the embarked security team who engaged them with small arms fire and a sonic weapon.

 In a statement issued after the attack Vice Admiral Bill Gortney, Commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, said that: “Due to Maersk Alabama following maritime industry's best-practices such as embarking security teams, the ship was able to prevent being successfully attacked by pirates.

“This is a great example of how merchant mariners can take pro-active action to prevent being attacked and why we recommend that ships follow industry best practices if they're in high-risk areas.”

The Alabama made headlines around the world when it was seized by pirates earlier this year. Three of these were killed when U.S. Special Forces rescued Captain Richard Phillips on April the 12th.

The ship is reported to have sustained no damage or casualties.