Piracy: a $50 Million Business and Counting

Increasingly brazen Somali pirates are disrupting shipping, but there are some easy ways to avoid them.

Captured Somali pirates are taken to the French naval vessel "Jean de Vienne" which came to the rescue of two cargo ships in the Gulf of Aden.
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In addition, none of the successful pirate attacks occurred at night, leaving mariners with a clear formula for minimizing trouble. "All vessels are advised to proceed through the entire Gulf of Aden at maximum possible speed. Vessels with characteristics that put them at higher risk, like maximum speeds of 15 knots or less, as well as those with low freeboard, are advised to minimize risk by transiting as much as possible of the eastern Gulf of Aden in hours of darkness," the report concluded.

For deterring speedboat-riding pirates, several ships reported success with fire hoses, parachute flares, smoke bombs, and sound cannons, the report found.

  • Read how the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet sees the fight against pirates.
  • See a map of the most recent pirate attacks around the world.
  • Read more about pirates.