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September-October 2012

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Weather Front

Wind and Waves Predict Shore Leave for Pirates

Pirates may brave many a stormy sea, but come summer, it's time for a break. Claiming 62 deaths and 3,500 captives between 2010 and 2011, Somali piracy accounts for more than half of all maritime piracy worldwide. But the summer monsoon season brings a respite from their attacks, according to a study by the New Zealand Defense Force and the Royal Australian Navy. Contrary to previous assumptions that piracy declines around the horn of Africa during both winter and summer monsoon seasons, their work revealed that the winter monsoon had little effect on piracy, while the impact of summer monsoons is “swift and clear.”

KIMBRA CUTLIP is a freelance writer and former assistant editor for Weatherwise.

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