Analyzing risks in Naval Operations: The case of visit, board, search and seizure operations in the Côte D’Ivoire Navy


  • Djaiblond Dominique-Yohann Kouakou World Maritime University, Fiskehamnsgatan 1, Malmo 21118, Sweden
  • Dimitrios Dalaklis World Maritime University, Fiskehamnsgatan 1, Malmo 21118, Sweden
  • Raphael Baumler World Maritime University, Fiskehamnsgatan 1, Malmo 21118, Sweden



Risk analysis, Maritime security, Law enforcement, Visit, Board, Search and Seizure (VBSS) operations, Navy


Visit, Board, Search and Seizure (VBSS) operations, which are the preferred modus operandi to deliver law enforcement at sea, have always been, and remain, a risky endeavor. Because this type of operation holds a pivotal role in maritime law enforcement, safe execution is vital to protect involved staff and assets. Hence, this paper analyzes risks associated with VBSS operations; its main aim is to improve the overall level of safety and bring the identified risks under control, by developing associated mitigation measures. First, the risks under discussion were assessed, based on the professional judgment and experience of the naval personnel involved in these operations. Their inputs were introduced in a conceptual framework and the associated results were scored, compared, and benchmarked. It is true that there is an inherent level of risk built in the execution of VBSS operations; although the occurrence of negative incidents/mishaps can be considered marginal for the vast majority of the time, events like these are most often associated with serious consequences. The results of this research effort acknowledged that risk management practices can be useful and have variable performance in bringing risks to as low as reasonably practicable. In this aspect, risk mitigation can be more effective by implementing a systems approach of physical and administrative barriers with four distinct pillars: “Training”, “Equipment”, “Organizational Culture”, and “Procedures”.


  • Research bridges the gap of knowledge in studies on risks in a key naval operations
  • Novelty of the conceptual research framework designed by authors which has proven to grasp important aspects of naval operations
  • Research addresses performance factors of naval forces securing the Gulf of Guinea region


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How to Cite

Kouakou, D. D.-Y., Dalaklis, D. ., & Baumler, R. (2023). Analyzing risks in Naval Operations: The case of visit, board, search and seizure operations in the Côte D’Ivoire Navy. Maritime Technology and Research, 5(1), 258421.