Why do so many shipping companies avoid reporting pirate approaches and attacks?

As alarming as it is to see the statistics on the number of pirate incidents reported around the world, it’s even more alarming to realize that many other pirate incidents still go unreported or are ultimately brushed under the rug. While some of these unreported incidents involve small or private crafts, some companies also fail to report run-ins with pirates in an effort to “save face”—and save costs—over potentially damaging press.  

Reporting pirate attacks can put companies in a difficult position, particularly if the information might impact important clients, put future contracts in jeopardy, or reveal potential negligence on the part of the ship owner, the ship operator, or the ship captain. As a strategy to avoid these kinds of complications, companies may avoid reporting an incident to authorities or publicly minimize the severity of the attack. 

While this may seem like an effective loss-prevention tactic for companies who rely on sea routes, this type of activity causes a big problem when there are injuries involved. Unfortunately, the lengths shipping companies go to in order to minimize damage to the business’ image and bottom line sometimes ends up coming out of the pockets of the true victims of pirate attacks—the seafarers who were directly financially, physically, and emotionally injured in the incident. You may find that your employer is unwilling to pay your expenses and, instead, is actively working to erode the legitimacy of your claim.

If you feel that your employer isn’t taking your claims seriously after a pirate incident, reach out to our team today, or submit your own questions about the aftermath of pirate attacks using the contact form on this page.

Brian Beckcom
Highest Possible 10/10 AVVO ranking. Husband. Father. Fisherman.