The Panama Canal Authority published an advisory regarding the unsafe practice of certain vessels calling at Panama Canal waters.
As explained, it has come to the attention of the Panama Canal Authority (ACP), that ACP personnel, primarily pilots and boarding officers, have been subjected lately to using the outer stairs of the superstructure of vessels when proceeding from the embarkation deck to the navigation bridge and vice versa.
According to the marine notice:
This practice unnecessarily exposes our personnel to areas that are poorly illuminated, are exposed to the
weather, have slippery steps due to grease and soot, with wet and slippery handrails, and likely obstructions
due to the presence of drums, waste, equipment, spare parts, or a combination of the aforementioned.
This unsafe practice is unacceptable and must be discontinued. Specifically the authority stated that all vessels must provide ACP personnel, in particular pilots and boarding officers, access to the navigation bridge from inside the superstructure of the vessel be it via elevators or, in their absence, indoor stairways.