Flag states must protect seafarers and passenger’s health during coronavirus crisis
The impact of Covid-19's rapid, global spread across the maritime industry, particularly the cruise ship industry, has made global headlines since the outbreak of the global pandemic, ITF said in its statement.
In February, the Diamond Princess was quarantined at the Japanese Port of Yokohama dominating media news.
The Grand Princess created headlines last week after being refused permission to dock in California in the face of rumors that some passengers and crew had tested Covid-19 positively.
The coronavirus-stricken Braemar made global headlines this week after turning away from many Caribbean ports and spending days looking for somewhere to dock before Cuba agreed to allow passengers and crew to be offloaded.
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines reported that the Braemar is achored about five miles off the coast of Havana, awaiting a charter flight from the United Kingdom where only British guests and crew will be offloaded-no other nationalities. The remaining passengers and crew are still reportedly in limbo.
Since Chile barred cruise ship from docking in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, more than 100 Australian doctors and medical professionals are now stranded on cruise ship onboard the Roald Amundsen off Chile.
Dave Heindel, chairman of the ITF Seafarers ' section today called attention to the flag states ' inability to protect the health of seafarers and passengers during this humanitarian crisis.
“Attention needs to be called on the failure of the governments of Bermuda and the Bahamas in the cases of the Grand Princess and the Braemar for not accepting their responsibility to remedy the problem for its sovereign vessels,” said Heindel.
Maritime Business World