It will soon be mandatory for Western Australian port workers to be vaccinated against Covid-19 before they can access and undertake some roles on an ‘exposed’ vessel.
ccording to GAC, the Directions apply to all commercial ports in Western Australia and include anyone who has contact with an exposed vessel.
Implementation will be a staged approach to limit the potential impact on port activities.
More specifically, from October 15, port workers will need to have had at least their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine to access an exposed vessel, perform a service in connection with an exposed vessel or interact with crew. These workers will need to be fully vaccinated by November 12.
WA Health will also conduct a pop-up vaccination clinic at Fremantle Port on September 30 to make it easier for workers to get the COVID-19 vaccine. As part of the initial 1A cohort, port workers have had priority access to vaccinations since February 22, 2021.
Furthermore, GAC notes that nothing in the Directions prevents unvaccinated port workers from embarking or performing work on an unexposed vessel or coming into close contact with people from an unexposed vessel.
It will be the responsibility of the employer to collect and maintain records of vaccinated workers.
The Exposed Port Worker (Restrictions on Access) Directions provide exemptions for unvaccinated police and emergency workers, as well as statutory officers performing their duties from entering an exposed vessel.