BMP4 for Protection against Somalia Based Piracy available

The 4th Edition of the shipping industry's Best Management Practices for Protection against Somalia Based Piracy (BMP4) has now been released. BMP4 has been produced by the shipping industry in consultation with the combined naval forces - EUNAVFOR, the NATO Shipping Centre and the United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations Office (UKMTO) and also INTERPOL. Industry is keen to emphasise the excellent cooperation it has continued to receive from the military forces in this production of BMP4.

Industry's continued focus when revising Best Management Practice has been on targeting the document at seafarers. With this in mind BMP4 maintains the format of a pocket-sized booklet with a new title which reinforces the message that BMP is designed to protect seafarers. Security advice augmenting BMP4 will continue to be accessible on The Maritime Security Centre – Horn of Africa (MSCHOA) web site

Updates in BMP4 include a revision to the boundaries of the High Risk Area – now defined as an area bound by Suez, and the Strait of Hormuz to the North, 10 degrees South, and 78 degrees East. The Northern boundary, which is now defined as the Strait of Hormuz, recognises the fact that no piracy attacks have been recorded in the Arabian Gulf to date, and as such there is no threat there from Somali-based piracy.

Improvements to the BMP include a new Executive Summary at the beginning detailing the Three Fundamental Requirements of BMP to:

1. Register with MSCHOA.

2. Report to UKMTO.

3. Implement Self Protection Measures (SPM’s).

Other changes of note include:

• An Aide Memoire in diagrammatic format which illustrates how to “Avoid Being a Victim of Piracy”.

• There is also a revision to Section 5 – re-titled “BMP Reporting Procedures” and which clarifies reporting requirements for MSCHOA and UKMTO.

• Company Planning (Section 6) and Ship’s Master’s Planning (Section 7) are set out in a new tabular format.

• Section 12 provides a new subsection on “Prosecution of Pirates – Assisting Law Enforcement Authorities”, which was produced in conjunction with INTERPOL. This section includes reference to a 24-hr helpline and to INTERPOL’s new Maritime Task Force website.

• The section on Citadels (Section 8) includes reference to an Industry paper on Citadels on the MSCHOA / NATO Shipping Centre websites and states Naval / Military forces' criteria applied before boarding will be considered to release those in a Citadel.

• A new section on Armed Private Maritime Security Contractors includes a reference to IMO guidance included on the MSCHOA and NATO Shipping Centre websites.

• Guidance on the assistance provided by INTERPOL.

Film: Piracy: the Menace at Sea

Steamship Mutual P&I has commissioned the production of a 40-minute training film Piracy: The Menace at Sea for its members. This is a training film for seafarers to promote the BMP message. The film, made with support of EUNAVFOR, NATO Shipping Centre, UKMTO and Industry, is being launched to coincide with the publication of BMP4. Industry (BIMCO, ICS, INTERCARGO, INTERTANKO, ITF, OCIMF & SIGTTO) will purchase an additional 10,000 copies of the film for distribution by DVD to ships along with BMP4.

Various materials relating to the film are available for download regarding the film as follows.

Film Trailer:

Film Press reviews:

The industry organisations involved in the production of BMP4 will fund and produce around 50,000 copies of BMP4 for distribution, and will also make electronic copies available on their respective websites.

Members are encouraged to place a copy of BMP4 and the film onboard every ship.

How to obtain copies of BMP4:

1. A high resolution version (26 MB) is available by clicking here

2. A low resolution version (3 MB) is available by clicking here 

3. Printed copies are available from the publishers at Witherbies contact Alison Hunter-Gordon at Copies of the DVD Piracy: the Menace at Sea be ordered directly from Steamship Mutual by completing the online Order Form:

Please note that the estimated DVD release date is end August 2011.