On 22 October 2013, Captain Thomas’ day started with a bit more angst than normal. His boat was carrying radioactive materials which meant a lot more paperwork and his ship would be the last to onload at Onne.
At 0845, 15 minutes before the convoy was schedule to depart from the port, his sailing orders came in, directing him somewhere else besides his normal Agbami run.
“I don’t know where the supply boats for those fields were,” notes Captain Thomas. “Each field has its own supply vessels. If more are needed they usually hire a boat for what they call a spot job.
Even my Nigerian chief officer and the crew found it strange.”
At 0910, the C-Retriever was slightly delayed in leaving with the convoy and the Beachmaster announced over VHF Channel 16 the ship’s departure and destination – a practice generally avoided to conceal ship’s movements. Announcing the location and destination could make the ship easy prey for pirates.
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