The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore on Monday (23 March) issued guidelines and enhanced safety precautions for shore personnel and visiting crew carry out duties safely in view of the COVID-19 pandemic:
ADVISORY FOR SHORE PERSONNEL AND SHIP CREW VISITING OR WORKING ONBOARD VESSELS ALONGSIDE WHARVES, IN SHIPYARDS AND AT ANCHORAGES
The Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) situation is being monitored closely, and Singapore continues to take a calibrated and risk-based approach in determining the appropriate precautions and measures. From 23 Mar 2359H, crew and passengers on short term visits will not be allowed to disembark in Singapore for the time being. Crew change in Singapore is also disallowed for the time being. In addition, the port health office (PHO) requires all arriving vessels to submit the Maritime Declaration of Health (MDH) Form. Precautionary Measures for Vessels
MPA has taken the following enhanced measures for vessels arriving Singapore:
All suspected cases of COVID-19 crew/passengers will be assessed and/or tested for COVID-19. If there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 on board any vessel, PHO will quarantine the vessel at a designated anchorage or wharf, and in consultation with MOH provide the quarantine requirements for the crew and passengers. During the quarantine period, operations will not be allowed until the quarantine is lifted. If there is a need for any critical operation, PHO’s approval will be required and all persons working onboard will be required to don the appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) which may include surgical gowns, masks and gloves.
If there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 on board vessels, there is no restriction on operations. Precautionary Measures for Marine Service Providers
Notwithstanding the above measures and in consultation with Singapore’s Ministry of Health (MOH), marine service providers should consider the following additional precautionary measures when there is a need for interaction between the shore personnel and ship crew when conducting operations:
The above list of precautionary measures are not exhaustive, and companies/individuals may wish to take other reasonable precautionary measures.
Owners/managers/supervisors of marine services companies are to take note of all available health advisories and bring it to the attention of your organisation and employees. While we note that companies may wish to implement additional preventive measures in line with their respective company policies, they must ensure that any such measures implemented have to be in compliance with prevailing standards/procedures applicable in the Port of Singapore.
We thank all stakeholders for the continuous efforts in ensuring that Singapore’s port operations remain un-interrupted and efficient. We also urge all to remain vigilant, resolute and united in tackling the COVID-19 situation.
The full circular from the MPA is available here .
Photo credit: JeyHan Lau
Published: 24 March, 2020
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