TO COMBAT the theft of and from marine craft in the British Virgin Isles (BVI), a major initiative has been launched to deter thieves from boatyards and marinas in the territory.
The BVI is one of the largest and busiest yachting charter destinations in the world, with thousands of marine vessels based or berthed there.
The launch of the BVI Police-backed Marine Marking Initiative, which is using permanent property marking with labelling from Selectamark, took place at TMM Yacht Charters in Road Town on the island of Tortola.
The scheme comes in response to the problem of theft from vessels, and theft of dinghies and outboard motors.
TMM Yacht Charters are the charter company who are leading the theft reduction initiative. The company plans to mark other boats at their bases in Belize and St Vincent and the Grenadines. Meanwhile, other yacht charter companies and marinas have already expressed their interest in joining the initiative as soon as possible.
Reynell Fraser, The Police Commissioner of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, explained that the initiative will overtly mark valuable equipment items on the vessels using permanent property marking and labels from Selectamark.
He said: “Marine equipment will no longer be as valuable to the criminal as it will bear permanent markings which can be easily spotted by any law enforcement officer. It is virtually impossible to remove the markings and any attempt would seriously deface and devalue the items for resale.”
Local insurance agency Caribbean Insurers Limited is recommending the Marine Marking Initiative to their client base with an incentive that they will look at reducing the insurance excess on the policies of hundreds of private yacht/boat owning clients as a result.