MPA Singapore published a new circular regulating shore-based personnel boarding a vessel. The circular requires the owner, agent, or master to notify the Port Master in advance of any shore-based personnel expected to come onboard during the port stay in Singapore.
he circular deals with personnel boarding the vessel in connection with for example repairs, surveys, and inspections. The boarding of bunker and ship supplies personnel does not need to be notified.
Specifically, the owner, agent or master of the vessel must inform the Port Master three days before the arrival of the vessel, that the vessel will be conducting the activities mentioned in paragraph 1, and whether shore-based personnel (such as surveyors, P&I correspondents, superintendents and repair technicians) will be boarding the vessel at the anchorages or terminals. The following information shall be submitted:
- a. Name of vessel;
b. Name of service provider;
c. Purpose of boarding and scope of works;
d. Full name and local contact number of shore-based personnel;
e. The intended boarding date and time, with estimated duration on board; and
f. The service provider’s Safe Management Measures (SMM), which must include details of safe distancing and precautionary measures for COVID-19 before boarding, when conducting work on board and after completion of work
The owner, agent or master of any vessel who fails to notify and submit the required information within the stipulated time may be found guilty of a breach of Section 44 of the Maritime and Port Authority Act (Chapter 170A) and be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $10,000.
For vessels which have given the required advance notice, shore-based personnel who are boarding the vessel are reminded to:
Precautionary Measures for Vessels with Marine Service Providers Boarding in Port
For vessels which have shore-based personnel boarding, the vessel should adopt the following measures:
- All crew members are to wear a mask at all times and practise safe distancing (at least 2 metres apart).
- All crew members are to take and record their temperature twice daily.
- All crew members are advised to maintain good hygiene in the vessel’s accommodation areas by cleaning frequently touched surfaces (e.g. desk, chart tables, dining tables, bridge/engine room consoles, door handles, hand-holds, switches, telephones/VHF handsets, faucets, etc.)
- Master of the vessel should isolate unwell crew members and/or passengers.
- Access should be denied to shore-based personnel who are unwell.
- Minimise interaction of crew with shore-based personnel by, where possible, designating a separate, clean and disinfected rest area, and dedicated toilets for shore-based personnel to use only.
- Upon shore-based personnel disembarking, disinfect the areas that have been used and especially high touch points. The vessel’s master should follow the National Environment Agency’s guidance for disinfecting common areas and rooms.
- Keep a record of the movement of shore-based personnel on board the vessel.