The Association has recently handled a case where a number of stowaways were detected onboard a vessel that had sailed from Nigeria.
In line with prudent practice, the vessel in question had installed a set of bars in the rudder trunk to prevent stowaways from accessing the vessel through this area. Following loading operations in Port Harcourt the vessel sailed for Brazil with a cargo of cement. Once the vessel was about 350 miles out, the crew discovered 5 stowaways hiding the rudder trunk.
The picture above shows where the stowaways had cut through the bars intended to keep them out. This incident serves as a reminder of how determined some stowaways are to board a vessel. Prior to departure all areas should be searched, even those that appear fairly secure. The Association has recently produced a checklist that can be found through the link below.
Source of information:
Ernest Foster, Hellas1.email@example.com