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New technologies are recommended, but do not overlook the seafarers The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) advocated a zero-carbon emissions target for shipping by 2050, claiming the energy transition can benefit seafarers if done in the right way. Question is, is there ever a right way? Not without realism Stephen Cotton, ITF’s labour representative on the board of the United ...

Training when paired with a commitment to care, is a worthwhile investment When shipping companies lament about manpower shortage, they may be referring to trained manpower. Having the right mindset towards ensuring this group acquire knowledge and experience is vital, and can result in costly consequences if taken in the wrong context. Knowledge is anyone’s power Employers would naturally find ...

They should if operation disruptions have cost them enough Mixed opinions about seafarers getting vaccinated saturated the web. While no individual should be compelled to get jabbed, there will be liabilities if an unvaccinated crew falls ill. The final destination might just be unemployment. Jab or no job At the recent conferences held during the London International Shipping Week, industry ...

If receiving vaccination promotes acceptance, should the unvaxxed be vexed in this social status? Being stuck onboard close to a year (or more) is akin to being away from civilisation. Just when a seafarer finally gets to sign-off, being unvaccinated turns him/her into a social outcast. For the right or wrong reasons, such is debatable. Unnecessary ostracism? It is common ...

Till lobbyists’ values are aligned with that of authorities’, shore leave is still a luxury The reality of seafarers onboard beyond extended periods is not new, neither are the strong advocating from various maritime bodies. However, the biggest misalignment between advocates and government authorities needs to be addressed. Lobbyists versus government authorities Many shipowners, charterers and operators are strongly encouraged ...

Seafarers can look forward to more safety measures and shore leave The International Association of Independent Tanker Owners (INTERTANKO) has drawn up a plan and list of procedures to ready a ship’s arrival, as well as caring for the crew. The body notably lobbied strongly for shore leave. Extending safe shore leave Intertanko asserted the shipmaster is to ensure accuracy in ...

A vessel idled for 50 days in India’s Kakinada Port over captain’s refusing to sign-off The captain’s infectious fear of unemployment prevented a new crew from boarding M.T. Qian Tai 1, with reports of him getting violent to keep the new team off. Violent stand-off Investigations revealed the Qian Tai 1 arrived in Kakinada port on 8 July 2021 to ...

Harassment and strained relationships onboard contributed to deteriorating mental health Mental Health Support Services’ (MHSS) hotline reported a surge in calls of over 60 per cent in the recent months. While majority was attributed to the pandemic’s impact on seafarers, bullying has emerged to be a contributor to their mental distress. Strained relationships MHSS named bullying as a contributor to ...

Multi-tasking appeared to be the biggest distraction according to SHI While seafarer vaccinations produced some improvement in the Neptune Chew Change Indicator, the SHI instead revealed seafarers were less happy with their workloads. Overwhelming workload What used to be a key skill turned out to be a bane onboard for seafarers today. Multi-tasking was a highly-valued skill set which facilitated ...

Vaccinations suggested to be the key for this improvement After close to two trying years and counting, the Neptune Declaration Crew Change Indicator showed some good news. The number of seafarers onboard vessels beyond their contract durations slightly decreased from 9 per cent to 8.9 per cent in August 2021. Key to the change The Crew Change Indicator revealed the ...