News 13 Jul, 2012

Togo - Port Information and New Anti-Piracy Measures

Club Correspondents Budd, Togo has advised that new anti-piracy measures have been introduced by the Togolese authorities following a recent increase in the number of piracy incidents in the Gulf of Guinea.

Anti-Piracy and Security Guidance

Vessels are required to comply with the following Togolese Navy requirements:

  • Vessels anchoring off Togo should do so at least 3 to 4 nautical miles from the territorial waters of either Benin or Ghana. This may improve the chances of the Togolese Navy chasing and capturing any known or suspected attackers within Togolese territorial limits.
  • For identification purposes vessels must ensure that their Digital Selective Calling (DSC) systems are operational.
  • In the event of a piracy attack the Togolese Navy should be alerted by broadcasting a Mayday call by VHF radio telephone.
  • Vessels should not engage in any type of trade with fishermen, in particular Togolese fishing boats not displaying a registration number or fishing boats from neighbouring countries.
  • Vessels should not engage in any illegal trading or business activities with local shipping agency personnel.

It is also understood that the Togolese government has reached an agreement with security companies for the provision of armed guards to vessels at anchor off Lome, if required. Members contemplating such action should contact the Club for advice before doing so.

In addition to the above precautions, vessels in the Gulf of Guinea are advised to exercise a high degree of vigilance and, as far as practicable, apply the core anti-piracy principles of Best Management Practices (BMP).

Budd, Togo has provided the following information and recommendations for vessels proceeding to Lome:

Port Communications

  • Lome Port VHF radio station works on channels 16, 14 and 12, 24 hours a day.
  • A radio direction finding transmitter on 379 kHz, signal: “LME”, is located in position 06˚10.0’ North; 001˚16.3’ East.
  • Lome Coast Radio Station, call sign: “5VA”, works on 472 kHz, 500 kHz, and VHF channel 16.The station will also conduct radio telephone communications on 2182 kHz when requested.

Lome Anchorage

A secure anchorage is located 1 nautical mile from the West African gas pipeline and 6 nautical miles from Lome port breakwater.

Arrival Notification Procedures and Clearance

  • In order to obtain clearance, port agents should be advised at the earliest opportunity of the vessel’s ETA Lome, the vessel’s particulars and the quantity of cargo to be loaded or discharged. Also, if STS operations are planned, the  name(s) of the other vessel(s).
  • Vessels are required to call both Lome Port Control and the Togolese Navy prior to dropping anchor. The Togolese Navy monitors VHF Channels 16 and 10, 24 hours a day.

STS Operations

  • Vessels engaged in STS operations in Togolese waters are required to apply for clearance prior to commencing operations.
  • Clearance should be obtained via local agents and vessels will be subject to a flat anchorage fee of € 1,525.50 for 15 days.

Penalties

Vessels which fail to apply for clearance or do not comply with Togolese Navy requirements will be fined. The amount of the fine has not been specified.

The full text of the information and recommendations provided is available on the Budd website. Members requiring further guidance should contact the Loss Prevention department