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NE Brazil, Sao Luis - Yacht Attacked

By doina — last modified Jan 21, 2009 08:00 PM

Published: 2009-01-21 20:00:56
Topics: Piracy Reports 2007
Countries: Brazil

I want to report an attack in Sao Luis - Nort east - Brazil, at the end of November 2007. My wife and I were anchored alone at the mooring just in front of the Sao Luis Yacht Club on our 42' sailboat Nirvana. At 2.00 am we were boarded and attacked by 4 armed men, 3 with knives and 1 with a hand gun. The boat was open. The man with the gun hurt me during 15 minutes, several head wounds that required stitching at the Sao Luis hospital emergency. They didn't wound my wife but they were very violent and aggressive. After 15 minutes they disappeared with their rowing boat into the darkness.

They took money, 2 laptops, 2 cell phones, alcohol, cigarettes, and more. We spent 2 hours calling the authorities by VHF channel 16 before the police come and we went to the hospital. Brazilian emergency is like a supermarket on Saturday !!!

If you do not need the Brazilian police, it's better, they didn't do anything, just wrote our names on a sheet of paper and told me to take care the next time, that's it. The local yacht club, ship owners from the yacht club and even firemen the same. So the rule in Brazil is : Help yourself ! We have been sailing for 1 year along Brazil's coast and it is the same indifference everywhere, Brazilian people have so many problems, they don't care about you. Before this adventure, we planned to visit Venezuela, so this time we prefer to forget this dangerous country and forget this bad story for a while and sail in Caribbean islands and the USA.

So always the same advice. never stay alone anchored, close the boat when sleeping, light on the deck by night, sail far from the coast and so on ...

I have to report too, end of 2007, another incident that seems an attack but we are not sure, because: we were sailing near Abrolhos, islands near Rio de Janeiro, 100 miles from the coast, when at 6.00 am a small fisherboat chased us with 4 men ready to jump on our boat, but with a lot of wind, big waves and my engine running at the maximum, 9 knots speed and me calling for help on channel 16, they thought it was too dangerous to board our boat, so nothing happened ... I do not think at 100 miles from the shore, they want to sell me fish or lobster!

Thanks to noonsite for helping us with all this very useful information and we hope our story will help others boats sailing in Brazil.

Patrick and Patricia - NIRVANA 3