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Singapore: MPA updates procedures for marine service providers attending to vessels

25 Aug 2020

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) on Tuesday (25 July) published an advisory on updated procedures, precautionary measures and guidelines for any marine service providers attending to vessels at the port of Singapore: 


Singapore continues to take a calibrated and risk-based approach in determining the precautions and measures for the COVID-19 pandemic. The owner, agent or master of any vessel arriving in the Port of Singapore to conduct activities such as repairs, servicing, surveys and inspections which requires shore-based personnel to board the vessel, other than receiving bunkers and ship supplies, must notify and provide the relevant information, in advance, to the Port Master.

The owner, agent or master of the vessel must inform the Port Master 3 days before the arrival of the vessel, that the vessel will be conducting the activities mentioned in paragraph 1, and whether shore-based personnel (such as surveyors, P&I correspondents, superintendents and repair technicians) will be boarding the vessel at the anchorages or terminals. The following information shall be submitted:

  1. Name of vessel;
  2. Name of service provider;
  3. Purpose of boarding and scope of works;
  4. Full name and local contact number of shore-based personnel;
  5. The intended boarding date and time, with estimated duration on board; and
  6. The service provider’s Safe Management Measures (SMM), which must include details of safe distancing and precautionary measures for COVID-19 before boarding, when conducting work on board and after completion of work. 

Please refer to Annex A for the template submission

The information is to be submitted to the Duty Officer, Marine Safety Control Centre, email: [email protected]

The owner, agent or master of any vessel who fails to notify and submit the required information within the stipulated time may be found guilty of a breach of Section 44 of the Maritime and Port Authority Act (Chapter 170A) and be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $10,000.

Precautionary Measures for Marine Service Providers Boarding Vessels in Port

Shore-based personnel cannot board the vessel if no advance notice was given. For vessels which have given the required advance notice, shore-based personnel who are boarding the vessel are reminded to:

For vessels which have shore-based personnel boarding, the vessel should adopt the following measures:
Precautionary Measures for Vessels with Marine Service Providers Boarding in Port


Do Don’t
See a doctor if you are sick and stay at home

Leave the work area immediately if you
start feeling unwell and report to your employer

Don’t go to work even if symptoms appear mild
Do request for a designated work and rest area
Shorten the duration of stay on board to
minimise exposure

Don’t loiter in the crew living or common areas
No overnight stays on board visiting vessel
A mask must be worn at all times (unless the work
activity requires that no mask be worn).

In addition, to wear other appropriate Personal
Protective Equipment (PPE), where necessary,
such as gloves, goggles/ face shields and
surgical gown, without jeopardising
operational and personal safety

Do not reuse used PPE, and dispose PPE in
designated biohazard disposal bin
Practice safe distancing (at least 2 metres apart)
and avoid physical contact with vessel’s crew

Don’t shake hands. Adopt alternative greetings
Observe good personal hygiene such as frequent
washing of hands with soap or use hand sanitisers

Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
Bring and consume your own individually
packed food and drinks

Consume your meals separate from
the vessel’s crew

Do not consume food and beverages f
rom the vessel

Do not share food with others
  1. Owners/managers/supervisors of marine service companies are reminded to take note of all available health advisories and bring it to the attention of your company and employees.
    All crew members are to take and record their temperature twice daily.
  2. All crew members are advised to maintain good hygiene in the vessel’s accommodation areas by cleaning frequently touched surfaces (e.g. desk, chart tables, dining tables, bridge/engine room consoles, door handles, hand-holds, switches, telephones/VHF handsets, faucets, etc.)
  3. Master of the vessel should isolate unwell crew members and/or passengers.
  4. Access should be denied to shore-based personnel who are unwell.
  5. Minimise interaction of crew with shore-based personnel by, where possible, designating a separate, clean and disinfected rest area, and dedicated toilets for shore-based personnel to use only.
  6. Upon shore-based personnel disembarking, disinfect the areas that have been used and especially high touch points. The vessel’s master should follow the National Environment Agency’s guidance for disinfecting common areas and rooms.
  7. Keep a record of the movement of shore-based personnel on board the vessel.

Companies wishing to implement additional preventive measures in line with their respective company policies should ensure these additional measures comply with prevailing standards/procedures applicable in the Port of Singapore.

We thank all stakeholders for their continuous efforts in ensuring that Singapore’s port operations remain uninterrupted and efficient. We also urge all to remain vigilant, resolute and united in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic.

A full copy of the circular is available for download here

Photo credit: Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore
Published: 25 August, 2020

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