The Spanish LNG carrier La Mancha Knutsen was attacked by pirates in Gulf of Guinea on 90 nautical miles south off Port Harcourt, Nigeria. The tanker was approached by suspicious motor skiff from the stern with at least 7 heavy armed men on board. The Master raised alarm and increased speed, maneuvering to avoid boarding of the vessel. The pirates opened fire against the bridge of the LNG carrier, but after several minutes abandoned the attack and fled to the shore. After the unsuccessful attack the ship La Mancha Knutsen reported the accident to the local authorities and headed to Bonny, later during the day was berthed at the port for investigation. The LNG carrier was proceeding through Gulf of Guinea without security guards on board.
Fortunately during the accident there were no injuries and no material damages reported. The company operator refused to comment the piracy attack before getting in contact with the Master and until completion of the investigation.
The Spanish LNG carrier La Mancha Knutsen left Port of Aliaga in Turkey on February 25 and in early March it crossed the Canary Islands. Last Sunday the vessel was near to waters of Sierra Leone before entering the Gulf of Guinea, where was attacked by pirates.
The LNG carrier La Mancha Knutsen (IMO: 9721724) is operated by Knutsen OAS Shipping and belong to the Norwegian consortium Trygve Seglem and NYK. The vessel was built in 2016 by Hyundai Heavy Industries in South Korea. The LNG carrier has overall length of 284.00 m, moulded beam of 46.00 m and maximum draft of 10.20 m. The deadweight of the ship is 81,605 DWT and the gross tonnage is 114,000 GRT with capacity to transport 173,656 cubic meters of LNG.