Nine Russian seafarers stranded in Portland after their ship was detained by UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) in November will all be repatriated by Christmas, according to international maritime charity Sailors’ Society.
The UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) has updated its Code of safe working practices for merchant seafarers (COSWP) 2019, which was firstly published on 4 September 2015. The Code of Safe Working Practices (COSWP) Code details the regulatory framework for health and safety on board, safety management and statutory duties underlying the advice in the Code and the areas that should be covered when introducing a recruit to the safety procedures on board.
There is a lot talk about ‘human element’ in the maritime industry; the human element, which lies at the heart of shipping, is blamed for the majority of the accidents. In this regard, the industry has taken significant steps to address human factor issues and UK MCA’s Deadly Dozen is one of them.
The UK MCA issued an updated marine guidance note on alcohol limits for seafarers onboard UK vessels worldwide and for vessels operating in UK waters, under STCW. The new limit for blood is 0.05% or 50 milligram in 100 milliliters and the new limit for breath is 0.25 milligrams per liter of 25 micrograms in 100 milliliters.
An estimated 23,760 UK seafarers were active at sea in 2017, with overall numbers being broadly stable in recent years, according to recently released figures by UK MCA. In 2017, a total of 88,000 seafarers of all nationalities were estimated to be active at sea working for companies within membership of the UK Chamber of Shipping, and a fifth of these were UK nationals.
The UK MCA issued a Merchant Shipping Notice containing the detailed mandatory requirements specified by the Secretary of State under the Merchant Shipping (MLC) (Hours of Work) Regulations 2018, giving also guidance on the application of the Regulations.
The UK MCA issued a Marine Note, summarizing the changes to current MCA education and training requirements for obtaining a UK Certificate of Competency. The publication introduces further changes to the SQA OOW written examinations requirement for Overseas Collaborative Programmes and revisions to the approved programme timescale for reduced seagoing service.
UK MCA released a circular, in which it gives guidance on the Maintenance of lists of crew ashore. This note advises operators to maintain a list of crew, including all changes, at an address in the United Kingdom.
The replacement crew of a Panama-registered ship asks repatriation, as the ship has been detained in Sharpness Docks, Gloucestershire, for over two months, amid claims ‘modern day slavery’ conditions. The ship has been detained since early June, for unpaid wages and poor working conditions.
Two reports have been published investigating aspects of fatigue of seafarers; The first is an on-board and predictive modelling study into the 8 hours on/8 hours off watchkeeping pattern; the second is a predictive modelling study into a range of 2-watch and 3-watch watchkeeping patterns.
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