With all the recent developments in smaller satellite TV and satellite communications antennas, one of Inmarsat‘s old-time services, Inmarsat C, doesn’t get much love these days. Well, it seems the old reliable “store and forward,” text-based service still has some teeth. It recently thwarted a pirate attack in the Indian Ocean. Nice going, C!
From the press release: Inmarsat C helped to repel pirates who tried to attack a bulk carrier in the Indian Ocean.
The 53,500 DWT vessel was approximately 100 miles south east of Socotra Island when the attack happened on February 11.
Five pirates armed with rocket-propelled grenades and assault guns approached and attempted to board. They fired towards the accommodation section and the ship then alerted naval units in the vicinity via an Inmarsat C distress priority piracy alert.
The pirates broke off the attack because of the response from one of the naval units, and were also deterred by the sea swell and evasive manoeuvring carried out by the vessel.
The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) receives piracy alerts from ships and then broadcasts detailed piracy alerts to all ships in the ocean region using the Inmarsat C SafetyNET system.
Inmarsat’s head of maritime safety services Brian Mullan said: “This shows how effective Inmarsat C can be in not only sending out distress priority alerts from ships but also as a highly effective means of receiving the latest information which will alert the ship’s master to incidents in his area.
“The key information from the IMB continues to help shipowners and managers plan preventative measures and can assist in avoiding piracy attacks in the future.”