Red Sea Situation – Daily Bulletin

Welcome to the third daily bulletin relating to the situation in the Red Sea and Suez Canal. After a couple of relatively quiet days there was an incident today.

Situation update

After 3 days there has been a significant incident, although in the Indian Ocean rather than the Red Sea.  Chem Pluto, a Liberia-flagged chemical/products carrier, was struck on the stern by a UAV, which caused a fire in the rope locker. Some structural damage was reported, and some water was taken onboard. However, the fire was extinguished with crew casualties. The Indian Navy was responding. The Vessel was Israel-affiliated. She had last called Saudi Arabia and was destined for India at the time of the incident. Lat/Lon: 19.8415/66.2579 This location is 200M southwest of Veraval, India and so represents an incident in a new theatre and change of operation risk.

Through World of Ports (, we now see several Container vessels arriving in Mauritius. It does appear that Operators are bypassing South Africa and using Port Louis, Mauritius as their bunker call. Typically, this may add 9-14 days to a voyage length. Clarksons reports over 150 vessels have chosen to reroute to date, which will result in price increases, and also increased demand for bunkers, crew logistics and husbandry.

There is congestion in South African ports due to bad weather and equipment failures. However, there is sufficient bunker capacity, although Inchcape local port agents report halted supply at Algoa Bay due to customs and regulatory disputes.

Ambrey Daily Incident report:

    A Liberia-flagged chemical/products carrier was struck on the stern by a UAV, which caused a fire in the rope locker, approximately 200M southwest of Veraval, India
    A Singapore-flagged bulk carrier was approached by four skiffs while transiting southbound through the Bab el-Mandeb Strait, approximately 13M west of Dhubab, Yemen.
    A Liberia-flagged tanker sighted an aerial threat flying above the vessel while transiting eastbound through the Gulf of Aden, closing on Point A of the International Recommended Transit Corridor
    A Malta-flagged bulk carrier was hijacked 380M east of Socotra Island. The crew were taken hostage and the vessel was transferred to Somali territorial waters.
    A Liberia-flagged tanker sighted an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) flying in the vessel’s vicinity while exiting the Bab el-Mandeb Strait southbound approximately 7M south of Perim Island, Yemen.

Suez Canal Transits

The Suez Canal Authority has reported a 15% decline in transits, particularly of container vessels, in recent weeks. We have now seen a sharp decline to only 60 Suez Transits today. The trend line for December is now in decline. As previously mentioned, over 150 vessels have diverted around the Cape of Good Hope.

Suez Canal Transits 23

How can Inchcape Shipping Services help?

Inchcape Shipping Services is well established in Africa when considering to divert around the Cape of Good Hope. With 14 port offices and a network of carefully selected and vetted partners, our team of experienced agents offer top-notch support and expertise to vessels when they are in port, covering everything from crew welfare and customs formalities to fuel supply and waste management.

We provide:

  • 24/7 availability with a local Inchcape representative.
  • Direct liaison with the vessel on all aspects of the call when required.
  • Critical local expertise and liaison with managing local authorities.
  • Assist with crew logistics, including transport to and from the airport, accommodation, and medical assistance.
  • Coordination and facilitation of bunker supplies, supervision and sampling.

Our team are ready to support you in Africa and Mauritius. Please contact us for a prompt PDA on these email addresses:

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