Vessels calling in west African countries hit by the outbreak of ebola should consider restricting shore leave and strictly enforce existing security requirements banning unauthorised persons from boarding, three leading shipping organisations have warned.
A joint statement from the International Chamber of Shipping, International Maritime Employers’ Council and the International Transport Workers’ Federation urged masters to ensure that the crew are aware of the appropriate means of reducing risk.
Operators should avoid making crew changes in the ports of an affected country, and crews need to be aware of ebola symptoms and report them promptly to the person in charge of medical care should they occur.
A spokesperson for the three organisations commented: “Everyone is deeply concerned for those suffering from the ebola epidemic and supportive of a coordinated world response to help them.
“In the meantime we want to make sure that those in the world shipping industry play our part in ensuring the safety of crews visiting the affected countries, and minimising the risk of the virus spreading further.”
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