Is increasing the speed of a vessel at risk of piracy the best use of your
resources? It is common practice for vessels transiting past the East and
West Coasts of Africa to increase speed, all in an attempt to outrun pirates.
The thinking behind this is typically “the less time I spend in the danger
zone, the less risk I am at.” However, take a moment and apply this
mentality to other dangerous tasks; does it mean that the quicker you do
it, the safer you are? Probably not.
Pirate skiffs are known to routinely reach speeds of 25kn in favourable
sea conditions. Now, compare that to the speed of a Suez Max which
averages at 10kn and we can see that there is no chance of simply
outrunning the threat – at best it is a delay tactic and a costly one at that.
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