London — An oil products tanker off the coast of the UK has been at the center of a security incident involving stowaways, shipping sources and the local police said Oct. 25.
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The Hampshire Constabulary said seven people were detained after concerns were raised to police for the welfare of crew aboard the Nave Andromeda, an LR1 oil product tanker, which is currently just off the Isle of Wight.
"It was reported that a number of stowaways were on board, and they had made threats towards the crew," a Hampshire Constabulary spokesman said. "Following a multi-agency response by police, with support from the military and other emergency service partners, seven people were detained by police," he added.
Sources had told S&P Global Platts there was a security incident involving seven stowaways aboard the Nave Andromeda after it had left Nigeria earlier this month.
The Liberia-flagged tanker was on its way to Southampton, after it had delivered a 60,000 mt cargo to Lagos in early October, according to data from Platts trade-flow software cFlow.
The tanker was unladen and was supposed to reach Southampton on Oct. 25 before the incident occurred near the Isle of Wight.
ExxonMobil operates the 270,000 b/d Fawley refinery near Southampton while the BP-owned import-focused oil terminal at Hamble is also nearby.
The tanker had also stopped off to load some bunker fuel on the Canary Islands after it left Nigeria for the UK, cFlow data showed.
Navios Tankers Management, which operates the tanker confirmed that seven stowaways had been found on board when the vessel was on passage from Lagos.
"The Master became concerned at the behavior of the stowaways and requested that the Authorities intervene," the shipowner said in a statement.
All 22 crew members are safe and well, the Hampshire Constabulary spokesman added
A stowaway is a person who is secreted on a ship, or in cargo which is subsequently loaded on the ship, without the consent of the shipowner or the master or any other responsible person, and who is detected on board the ship before it has departed from the port, according to the International Maritime Organization.
(Adds latest comments from UK police)