visit, board, search and seizure
Definition/Scope: (Navy.mil) Managed by the Center for Security Forces (CENSECFOR) in Norfolk, Va., formal visit, board search and seizure (VBSS) training was created following the Gulf War in 1990 as a way to standardize and continue the Maritime Interception Operations introduced there as a result of UN resolutions. Skills taught in the VBSS courses include tactical movement and shooting, defensive tactics, repelling, searching and other team skills. The center’s training covers both VBSS Level I, which focuses on ships that comply with the instructions of the inspection team, and Level II, which addresses the tactics used to board vessels that are non-compliant. Level II ships have freeboard (the distance between the waterline and the main deck of the ship) of 25 feet or less above the water. Non-compliant vessels that have greater than 25 feet of freeboard, or that are actively opposing the boarding, are handled by teams of Special Operations Forces (SOF).
Broader Terms:Maritime Security Patrol Area
Related Terms:Maritime Security Operations