passagemaking security

Passagemakers Aboard S/V Quest Killed by Pirates

Passagemakers Aboard S/V Quest Killed by Pirates

S/V Quest

S/V Quest

Conflicting news reports this morning have agreed on one sad fact, that the four passagemakers aboard the S/V Quest, hijacked late last week by Somali pirates, are dead.  The CBS report is HERE.  The pirates reportedly told Reuters that they killed the hostages after their two commanders were killed by U.S. military forces shadowing the hijacked vessel.  U.S. military reports say the Navy only boarded the vessel after shots were heard aboard.

Undoubtedly, it will take a while for the actual facts to emerge from the haze of what is essentially a war zone off the East Africa coast, but I have to say that sailing alone in these waters seems plain foolhardy now.  We don’t know the exact reasons the Quest left a larger group, although friends in Seattle, quoted by news reports from there, suggest they may not have realized the true extent of the risk.  If that is so, it is hard to understand, since the marine media, online boating communities and government sources are full of daily discussion of the huge, and growing dangers in the area.

If you are sailing in the Indian Ocean, you need to be informed and prepared and there are a huge number of resources to help you get and stay that way.  In the meantime, our thoughts go out to the families and friends of the sailors aboard S/V Quest.

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Posted by Tom in Cruising Under Sail, People, Sailboats