Special Boat Service Raids Tanker

| October 27, 2020

The Brit’s Special Boat Service (SBS) is described as the Royal Navy’s “answer to the SAS”. The Navy’s branch of the special forces is also highly skilled, and mainly recruits from the Royal Marine Commandos – a part of the military already considered to be an elite force. They’ve been busy of late.

Poetrooper sends.

This Is The Elite Unit That Raided The Tanker Threatened By Stowaways Off The UK Coast

Whether on land or at sea, Britain’s secretive Special Boat Service has a history of getting the toughest jobs done.

British special forces sprung into action yesterday, storming a crude-oil tanker in the English Channel in response to a suspected hijack attempt that led to seven stowaways being detained after a raid that lasted just nine minutes. The secretive Special Boat Service (SBS), a less well-known component of the U.K. special operations community, but one with a storied history, carried out the raid.

Taking down the Nave Andromeda

The Special Boat Service team took control of the 42,000-gross-tonnage Liberian-registered tanker Nave Andromeda as darkness fell on the evening of October 25, 2020, after fast-roping from Royal Navy helicopters onto the deck. Reportedly landing at either end of the tanker in a pincer movement, the soldiers, equipped with night-vision devices, subdued the stowaways after they had made threats towards the crew during what had been a ten-hour standoff.

According to a report in The Times, the captain of the tanker put out the lights while Royal Navy helicopters used “obscurant” tactics — flashing lights in an effort to disorientate the stowaways on board.

Chalk up another for the good guys. Read the entire article here: The Drive

Thanks, Poe.

Category: Bravo Zulu, Guest Link, International Affairs

Comments (10)

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  1. KoB says:

    BZ Limey’s, job well done. The crew shoulda, coulda, woulda, had oughta let the wanna be hi-jackers leave the ship like they wanted to. Wearing cement water wings. Glad to know that some of the Brits are still keeping a stiff upper lip…and a pair.

    Cool article, lot more detail than the other blurbs about this story. Tanks!

  2. Graybeard says:


    Very well played, gentlemen.

  3. Call Blimey Love A Duck, at least the Brits didn’t have to get up Oily in the morning to effect the night rescue of the crew onboard the Oil Tanker. The Skipper and crew most likely had a Tankering feeling that they would be rescued.

  4. Combat Historian says:

    One of the greatest special operations raids of WWII was carried out in December 1942 by the British Royal Marine Boom Patrol Detachment (RMBPD), organizational predecessor to the SBS. The Brit commandos rowed six kayaks into the occupied French coast near Bordeaux and planted limpet mines on German ships anchored offshore, and ultimately seriously damaged six enemy vessels. Most of the commandos were captured and executed, but a few escaped capture and ultimately made it back to friendly territory with the help of the French resistance…


  5. That Op. was called Op. Frankton and in 1955 it was made into a movie called Cockleshell Hero’s. It’s been on TCM.

  6. AW1Ed says:

    Extra cool points if the SBS used these:

    brit jet suit

    REAL LIFE SUPERHEROES Royal Navy using flying Iron Man-style jet suits to practice storming enemy ships

    Kevin Adjei-Darko
    In one video, a man clad in the suit is seen flying through the air from a sea vessel before landing on a ship.

    He then makes his way back to the vessel he took off from.

    In another amazing scene, four men in jet suits are seen effortlessly elevating themselves towards a ship.

    The men are seen launching themselves from a vessel, then flying high in the sky before landing on the ship.

    They congratulate each other by shaking hands once they are securely on the ship.

    The action packed video was shared by the U.S. Naval Institute on their twitter feed with the caption: “The Royal Navy has been testing Jet Suit assault teams to determine if the Iron Man-like suits could be used to rapidly swarm and board ships.”

    It also said the U.S. Special Operations Command is “also evaluating a jet pack that can reach speeds of more than 200mph”.

    The Jet Suit was made by Gravity Industries, a British tech startup firm.

    Read the rest here: The Sun

    Hat tip to ChipNASA for the link.

  7. A Proud Infidel®™ says:

    BLOODY WELL DONE JOB, it makes me proud of the British part of my Ancestry!

  8. USMC Steve says:

    When I was in, we had occasion to talk to a couple of SAS guys, and the conversation turned to the SBS. We had some of them around as well. The general consensus among the SAS bubbas was that the SBS guys were crazy. When the SAS is concerned about you, there is usually some basis behind it.

  9. Mick says:

    I have friends that are still on active duty in the Royal Marines and Royal Navy. SBS capabilities closely approximate those of US Navy SEALs.

    Even after their (drastic) defense cuts, the Brits can still bring the pain when they need to.

    Well done, SBS.