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Old 15-04-2019, 13:38   #16
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

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Originally Posted by GRIT View Post
Similar situation happened to us in 2000, it's been a crapshoot for years there. Everyone always poopaahs those who worry about such things, it's "rare". Sure, but when it's "you" it doesn't matter how RARE it is!..
Indeed! You've put your finger on my first consideration, when judging risk. How much will it hurt?

The risk equation I use is quite simple:
Risk = (Impact X Probability) ÷ Cost
Impact is the effect should a risk event occur.
Probability is the likelihood the event could occur within a given time frame. Cost is what it takes to mitigate or reduce the risk to an acceptable level.
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Old 15-04-2019, 14:16   #17
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

T&T yacht attacked by Venezuelans on high seas - Trinidad Guardian





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Old 15-04-2019, 14:45   #18
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

Looks like yacht builders have to add a layer of ballistic Kevlar to the top sides now in newbuilds.

Nononono... not good and not a pleasant experience.
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Old 15-04-2019, 22:31   #19
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

Certainly not sarcasm, yes partly tongue in cheek, extending off the flamethrower idea.
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Old 15-04-2019, 23:44   #20
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

Avoidance is the only answer, sadly. As someone who has traveled much of the world on many different vehicles, feet were always the safest. The higher up you go, the worse safety becomes. Example: Unless you're traveling with an armed escort or convoy, safety in sketch countries or areas ALWAYS depends on blending in, and the reasons for attack are ALWAYS money (with some terrorist/war-zone exceptions, which I'll ignore because I assume none of us are sailing to Somalia. When I traveled by foot, I could blend in socioeconomically very easily, and was never harassed. Go up to a motorbike, becomes harder but at least you're quicker (not quicker than a roadblock, ask me how I know, but still) If it's beat up, you blend in. In the VW bus, I chose not to go to transnistria (tho I always wanted to) because the russian soldiers like to commandeer vehicles sometimes, so it was a no-go. Go all the way up to a bloody YACHT, even if it's the smallest one in your home marina, you are a glaring target of opportunity that you simply cannot hide. You're in a pokey, slow moving giant white thing filled with more electronics than the biggest radio shack in the country, enough goodies and alcohol to equal a year or more pay, sailing around countries where even the cops and government are likely in on the scam. What can you do but avoid the places where attacks are happening?

Yes yes I'm the first that pipes up with gung-ho garbage about repulsing pirates...and I do have a lot of countermeasures at hand as I described in other threads. But realistically, against 8 men with guns, no cruising couple stands much chance, and if I defend myself with deadly force, the only sight I'll be visiting for a decade or two is a honduran jail... no thanks.

So I'll avoid Trinidad and the neighboring islands until the situation improves. Yes it sucks, Port of Spain has been like a siren call for me all my life, and now I gots me a boat and I can't visit. But Libya has amazing roman ruins, Damascus is (was) a jewel, the diving off Mindanao is to die for (these days, literally)....I wrote those places off for the moment too. There is too much of my life on this boat to take unnecessary chances to tick off a new country or find a new bar. I can swim and dive and drink just as well off a country where I don't need to sleep with one eye open, and give my money to a government that combats crime and keeps its citizens happy and well treated enough to leave me the hell alone

EDIT: oh and Brunei.... f@ck that place
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Old 15-04-2019, 23:55   #21
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

I'm glad they lived to tell the tale. I have friends that were killed by Somali pirates on their yacht a few years ago. The U.S. Navy captured one of the perpetrators. He was tried state side and is rotting in a federal prison for the rest of his life. I'm not sure how to work that into the cost/benefit equation posted above.
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Old 16-04-2019, 00:55   #22
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

https://youtu.be/rqAItndr6vQ
last news on this pirates attack,
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Old 16-04-2019, 03:03   #23
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

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Originally Posted by nightowle View Post
I'm glad they lived to tell the tale. I have friends that were killed by Somali pirates on their yacht a few years ago. The U.S. Navy captured one of the perpetrators. He was tried state side and is rotting in a federal prison for the rest of his life. I'm not sure how to work that into the cost/benefit equation posted above.
Risk = (Impact X Probability) ÷ Cost

Risk = (Ultimate Impact x Very High Probability) ÷ Moderate Lost Opportunity
Risk = Very High! ☞ Don't go near
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Old 16-04-2019, 05:13   #24
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

Quote: “even when armed you stand no chance against 8 armed man in a pirogue”

This is BS because the attacked yacht survived even without using guns. Just zig-zagging under speed in rough seas prevented being boarded. It seems that having a thought-out plan is all it takes to reduce risk of serious harm. Imagine sending a hail of buckshot into the pirogue with 8 men holding on for dear life trying to board you from an unsuspected angle.
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Old 16-04-2019, 05:38   #25
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

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Originally Posted by Sojourner View Post
Unless you're traveling with an armed escort or convoy, safety in sketch countries or areas ALWAYS depends on blending in
Although it probably wouldn't have helped in the situation mentioned by the OP, in general a big YES to this, plus a general addition of "learn local culture and don't act like an idiot/moron/disrespectfully".

Years of cruising 'down island', even on a US flagged yacht reinforced this. Speaking back in local west indian dialect to potential trouble makers, or just people hanging around, often diffused situations and sometimes even resulted in new friends. My often used line was 'I live here, I'm working and trying to survive, just like you (ie: I'm not a tourist, don't try to pull that crap with me)". But maybe this doesn't work anymore with the proliferation of cruising boats everywhere.

Most other times just keeping your head down and blending in is essential, whether that be in the eastern caribbean, in eastern europe, or elsewhere. Eg: I try not to speak loudly in English (or French, Italian, or Russian) while riding the tram here in Poland later at night or before football games start. It's just common sense.
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Old 16-04-2019, 05:55   #26
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Quote: “even when armed you stand no chance against 8 armed man in a pirogue”

This is BS because the attacked yacht survived even without using guns. Just zig-zagging under speed in rough seas prevented being boarded. It seems that having a thought-out plan is all it takes to reduce risk of serious harm. Imagine sending a hail of buckshot into the pirogue with 8 men holding on for dear life trying to board you from an unsuspected angle.
Yes, and No. In the past, in worse times, in the Indian Ocean a 40m private sailing yacht took a serious approach to an attack - the (normal sailing) male crew appeared on deck in flak jackets, helmets, and armed to the teeth with high powered weapons aimed and ready (the female crew were locked in a safe room below) - and the pirate pirogue (not selling fish!) high tailed it out of there without even a shot being fired, such was the demonstration of apparent force and resistance.

But this 'normal sailing crew' had actually been sent on advanced training by the owner, and a couple of sas guys were aboard too, plus a serious weapons cache, and the will to use it if ultimately required to defend the vessel.

But is this the average cruising couple on a small boat?

Some vessels maybe yes, some are 'more equal' than others, and some cruise with more crew and are simply more able to fight off an attack with whatever means.

But the average cruising boat, who these days are novices even at the sailing part of things, probably mom and pop, and maybe even kids too, probably not unless they are well trained and carrying automatic weapons, which in itself is unlikely.

So the old adage still applies: Prevention is better than the cure.

On a lighter note: Hit, Run, Hide - the Highland Way

https://getyarn.io/yarn-clip/c18cb6e...9-bea3facc358b

PS: cool boat @s/v Jedi - I was aboard Beowulf with Steve and Linda a long time ago in Grenada.
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Old 16-04-2019, 06:11   #27
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

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Originally Posted by jmh2002 View Post
Yes, and No. In the past, in worse times, in the Indian Ocean a 40m private sailing yacht took a serious approach to an attack - the (normal sailing) male crew appeared on deck in flak jackets, helmets, and armed to the teeth with high powered weapons aimed and ready (the female crew were locked in a safe room below) - and the pirate pirogue (not selling fish!) high tailed it out of there without even a shot being fired, such was the demonstration of apparent force and resistance.

But this 'normal sailing crew' had actually been sent on advanced training by the owner, and a couple of sas guys were aboard too, plus a serious weapons cache, and the will to use it if ultimately required to defend the vessel.

But is this the average cruising couple?

Some vessels maybe yes, and some cruise with more crew and are simply more able to fight off an attack with whatever means.

But the average cruising boat, with mom and pop, and maybe even kids too, probably not unless you are well trained and carrying automatic weapons, which in itself is unlikely.

So the old adage still applies: Prevention is better than the cure.

On a lighter note: Hit, Run, Hide - the Highland Way

https://getyarn.io/yarn-clip/c18cb6e...9-bea3facc358b
Is this your opinion or do you have info that supports this? The info I have is from the book “Pirates aboard” and the cases analyzed in it clearly show that being armed in combination with having a security plan that includes delaying boarding and cabin entry, is 100% effective. Just the sight of firearms or a couple warning shots in the air in combination with a locked companionway in those cases that the boarding succeeded, was 100% effective.

This is only logical: only an idiot would climb down dark unknown companionway steps knowing there are armed crew down there aiming at you. They don’t even try.

We have been lucky and the closest we’ve been to being boarded was a swimmer hanging onto our swimming platform, who became Johnny Weismuller when he saw me coming at him. This was at anchor in Rodney Bay, far away from Trinidad and Venezuela but always high risk.
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Old 16-04-2019, 06:51   #28
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

Do I have info that supports what? That most cruising couples are not armed, and not professionally trained? No I don't have these stats but yes it is my opinion that this is the situation overall.

The info that you quoted: "that being armed in combination with having a security plan that includes delaying boarding and cabin entry, is 100% effective. "

As you said that seems (and IS) totally logical, and was shown to be the case in the other example that I gave, and I don't have any argument against this logic in a simplistic sense. On my professional side of the business we always had a plan for all actions onboard, and in fact it was a legal requirement.

My opinion only stated that this is not the situation for most cruisers either simplistically or practically, for various different reasons.

Most modern cruisers are not that well prepared for normal cruising events, let alone a pirate attack, and irrespective of any guns vs no guns ideology (which is the not the point of my posts).

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Old 16-04-2019, 07:09   #29
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

In the police world there is a universally accepted/utilized concept of the force continuum...the recognized relationship between perceived threat and appropriate response. Aside from helping to delineate what response is legal/not-legal, it's used to understand the dynamics of an encounter with a bad guy so as to increase chances of survival.

Typically the most effective thing a good guy can do to diffuse the situation is to show force and suggest redirection. Simple as that. This is sort of a non-aggressive posturing.

What is counter-intuitive, that many people do not appreciate, is that if you skip the "lower level" good guy responses and immediately escalate to combat maneuvers that might cause the bad guy physical harm...well then you've just started a fight to the death for sure. Most bad guys just want money/loot. Weapons are usually for show, but how guilty would you feel using a large yacht for target practice in the open ocean if it just tried to swamp you?

One wonders in the subject case here what would have happened if the good-guy boat had the capability to fire warning shots long before getting into such close proximity of the good-guy boat so as to have made tightly grouped holes in the good-guy boat hull. If the maneuvering antagonized the bad guys to cause them to fire shots that they didn't plan on shooting.
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Old 16-04-2019, 09:32   #30
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Re: piracy attack in trinidad

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Originally Posted by jmh2002 View Post
Do I have info that supports what? That most cruising couples are not armed, and not professionally trained? No I don't have these stats but yes it is my opinion that this is the situation overall.

The info that you quoted: "that being armed in combination with having a security plan that includes delaying boarding and cabin entry, is 100% effective. "

As you said that seems (and IS) totally logical, and was shown to be the case in the other example that I gave, and I don't have any argument against this logic in a simplistic sense. On my professional side of the business we always had a plan for all actions onboard, and in fact it was a legal requirement.

My opinion only stated that this is not the situation for most cruisers either simplistically or practically, for various different reasons.

Most modern cruisers are not that well prepared for normal cruising events, let alone a pirate attack, and irrespective of any guns vs no guns ideology (which is the not the point of my posts).

Yes, I agree, most cruisers aren’t prepared for any form of calamity. The victim in this case managed to repell the attack even without guns, showing the power of a security plan and that guns aren’t a requirement for it

Even though cruisers often state that they don’t want to think these calamities over (rather stay home if that would be required), they do tend to carry things like fire extinguishers, EPIRB, life rafts etc. which unfortunately loose much of their value without such plans.
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