Amid the COVID-19 crisis and the crew change matter that has arise, the International Federation of Shipmasters’ Associations (IFSMA) urges governments to allow seafarers’ transportation during the outbreak.
In fact, the Association calls all Governments to adopt the “‘Framework of protocols for ensuring safe ship crew changes and travel during the COVID-19 pandemic” without delay, allowing shipowners, operators and management companies to change over their tired crewmembers.
Specifically, IFSMA noted:
Governments must act now in order to avoid personal injury to, and mental breakdown of, seafarers and avoid the significant risk of accidents and consequential danger to life and the environment.
Following the pandemic situation, IFSMA said that is receiving several reports from its ship masters’ associations around global, concerning the welfare and safety of their crews and the increased risk with which they are operating in an already high risk environment.
During these unprecedented times, seafarers are feeling let down and abandoned by their Governments.
Overall, in light of the seafarers’ repatriation, the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) and the Joint Negotiating Group (JNG) also expressed their support about IMO’s circular concerning crew change.