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Hot Port News from GAC

09-Jul-2020

COVID-19 TEST FOR ARRIVING CREW
Hong Kong

REVISED PROCEDURE FOR JOINING CREW
Russia

INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS SUSPENDED, PASSENGER LIMITS INTRODUCED
Australia

AMENDED PROTOCOL FOR VESSEL OPERATIONS
Port Louis, Mauritius

CREW CHANGES UPDATE
Lebanon

PORT TARIFF INCREASE
Darwin, Australia

COVID-19 test for arriving crew
Thursday, July 9, 2020, Hong Kong

From tomorrow (Friday 10 July) at 0001 hours local time, all on-signing crew must have a negative/not detected COVID-19 test result, from sample taken within 48 hours before boarding the plane to come to Hong Kong.

If this requirement is not fulfilled, they will not be allowed to enter Hong Kong and will be repatriated to their hometown.

The sample and test result must be collected and issued within 48 hours before departure flight from hometown.

For further details and updates, as well as information about operations in Hong Kong, contact GAC Hong Kong at shipping.hongkong@gac.com

Revised procedure for joining crew
Thursday, July 9, 2020, Russia

Due to stabilisation of the epidemiological situation of the new COVID-19 infection and lifting of a number of restrictions in the subjects of the Russian Federation, arriving Russian crew members are no longer required to be placed in isolation for 14 days before joining their vessel.

Before embarking the vessel for a crew change, newly arrived crew members are now only required to provide a certificate of examination for a new coronavirus infection (COVID-19) (by PCR or IgG detection), received not more than 3 days before embarkation.

Please note that this applies to Russian crew members only. Crew changes for the foreign crew remain prohibited in Russia due to COVID-19.

For further details and updates, as well as information about operations in Russia, contact GAC Russia at russia@gac.com

International flights suspended, passenger limits introduced
Thursday, July 9, 2020, Australia

Due to an outbreak of COVID-19 in Melbourne, all international flights in and out of the city have been suspended.

Further, the New South Wales Government has restricted the number of flights and passengers arriving into Sydney on international flights. This has been limited to 450 passengers per day. This significantly reduces flight availability in and out of Sydney.

For further details and updates, as well as information about operations in Australia, contact GAC Australia at shipping.australia@gac.com

Amended protocol for vessel operations
Thursday, July 9, 2020, Port Louis, Mauritius

The Mauritius Ministry of Health and Wellness has issued amended guidelines and steps to be taken during port operations on board of cargo vessel at berth.

All vessels arriving at the port of Port Louis are considered at a high risk.

All agents must submit by email at port-ho@govmu.org the following information 24 hours before the arrival of any vessel at Port Louis harbour:
(i) The Maritime Declaration of Health;
(ii) Port of calls
(iii) Crew list, which shall include last crew change date
(iv) Any shore leave in the last ports
(v) A report, which includes a list of all crew members with their body temperature just before the report’s delivery.
(vi) In case of crew change during the last 14 days any results of PCR test for COVID-19 and any undertaking by ship Master.

Green light will be granted on condition that the information provided satisfies the Port Health Authority, including no crew change or shore leave during the last 14 days prior to ETA and the vessel will be allowed to enter port limits for free pratique.

Green light will not be granted to vessel where there is crew change without a negative PCR COVID-19 test at most five days prior to embarkation on the vessel or shore leave in the last 14 days prior to ETA.

Green light can be granted to vessel where there is crew change with a negative PCR COVID-19 test at most five days prior to embarkation on the vessel and the crew must have boarded the vessel directly from the airport.

Green light can be granted to vessel where there is crew change with a negative PCR COVID-19 test at most five days prior to embarkation on the vessel and the crew did not board the vessel directly from the airport, provided the said crew remain confined on board segregated from the other crew. In such cases, the Master of the vessel must take a written undertaking that said crew had been effectively segregated from the other crew and the undertaking must be forwarded the Port Health Authority during request for green light.

Boarding of the vessel for free pratique will be carried out outside harbour by Port Health Authority only. A service boat shall be provided by agent to the Port Health Authority to clear the vessel outside harbour. The service boat operators shall comply fully with all precautionary measures related to COVID-19 including wearing of face mask. During boarding, all crew members shall wear face masks and rubber gloves.

Temperature of all crew members will be taken and recorded on the arrival crew list.

If the Port Health Authority is satisfied free pratique will be given and order the ship Master on-board to lower the yellow flag.

If the Port Health Authority is not satisfied and suspects an infectious disease on board, he/she will contact the Regional Public Health Superintendent on call for protocol COVID-19 to be initiated and maintained yellow flag, while vessel will remain outside harbour.

Once protocol will be completed, free pratique will be given and yellow flag will be lowered.

Harbour radio will be immediately informed of the time free pratique will be granted.

After Port Health Authority completed all formalities and left the vessel, pilot will come on board to berth the vessel.

Once at berth, crew members will be required to remain in their rooms during operational activities, except those involved in specific activities such as unlashing of containers, connecting of hose and crane maneuvering. They should be equipped with the proper personal protective equipment (PPE).

Each vessel will have to assign a contact person to coordinate with the port staff. This contact person will be required to wear the proper PPE.

Inoperative vessels at berth and anchorage must lift the vessel ramp, gangway or pilot ladder.

During the vessel’s stay in the port, a representative must be appointed on behalf of the shipping agent / shipping company to ensure that the vessel’s crew remains on the vessel.

No shore leave/crew change will be allowed for crew members. For vessels servicing outer islands only Mauritian crew members may have shore leave or signing off, whereas foreign crew members may only have shore leave. For other vessels, signing off only of crew members can be considered on a case to case basis provided they have a negative PCR COVID-19 test at most five days prior to signing off.

Shore leave or signing off for sick crew member requiring medical attention will be considered on a case to case basis on terms and conditions imposed by the Port Health Authority:
(i) A Doctor of the Ministry Of Health and Wellness will visit patient accompanied by an officer of the Public Health and Authority.
(ii) In case patient need to be disembarked for further treatment, he must be admitted to a public hospital after authorization from the Port Health Authority.
(iii) The agency shall be responsible to arrange for the transportation of the patient from the vessel to the public hospital under the supervision of the Port Health Authority .
(iv) The vessel will have to remain in port during treatment of patient in hospital.
(v) After treatment of patient, the latter shall go back on board and leave with the vessel.
(vi) In case patient needs a long medical treatment, vessel may leave port provided patient remain in hospital. In such case, once patient is fit to fly he must be taken from hospital directly to airport under the supervision of the Port Health Authority to leave the country.

Stowaways or passengers may not disembark.

With the exception of Port Authorities no ship chandler, visitors, agents, or surveyors will be allowed on board, except where specifically required and authorised. Only stevedores essentials for operations at berth will be allowed on board vessel and should be restricted to the minimum.

Sanitizer hand cleaner/hand washing facility shall be placed close to the gangway. A foot dip containing a mat soak in 0.5% chlorine solution shall be placed at vessel access point. Face mask/gloves shall be made available to those allowed on board of these vessels. Distance of 2 meters to be imposed when working on deck between stevedores and crew members responsible for unlashing of containers.

Records of all those allowed on board should be documented (name, organization, home address, mobile number) and agent will have to submit the information by mail to the Port Health Authority before expected time of departure of the vessel.

Health of crew member of vessel at berth will be monitored daily by the Port Health Authority.

In case of a sick crew member on a vessel, the information should be forwarded to the Port Health Authority on 52517473/59436271.

The above measures can be amended anytime during implementation.

(For information about operations in Mauritius, contact the GAC Dubai Hub Agency Centre at hub.ae@gac.com)

Source: Celero Shipping, Port Louis – GAC agent

Crew changes update
Thursday, July 9, 2020, Lebanon

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, crew changes in Lebanon are restricted to the following:

Beirut Airport re-opened on July 1st and restricted to max 10% of its normal capacity. Authorities have planned for not more than 2000 passengers per day due to required COVID-19 tests etc.

For Crew Sign-Offs, the latest available information is that crew must carry out the PCR (Covid-19 test) upon vessel/their arrival at port, wait on board for the results. If the result is negative, they will then be confined to a hotel for 72 hours. After 72 hours, a second COVID-19 test is to be carried out. If both tests are negative, sign-off Formalities may be started.

Prior to disembarkation, valid Traveler Insurance is to be arranged and to cover stay in Lebanon and all medical expenses. All expected Medical Expenses and costs must be transferred to the attending agent prior to vessel’s arrival.

For crew Sign-on, the previously advised regulations still apply.

For further details and updates, as well as information about operations in Lebanon, contact GAC Lebanon at lebanon@gac.com

Port tariff increase
Thursday, July 9, 2020, Darwin, Australia

Darwin Port has advised that its new Tariff Schedule has come into effect from 1 July 2020.

After reviewing operating expenses, Darwin Port has increased fees by 1.55%, with exception of Port Inception Fees which remain unchanged.

For information about operations in Australia, contact GAC Australia at shipping.australia@gac.com

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