The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) will be applying enhanced measures to further secure safe port operations and facilitate crew change. Namely, MPA will use its existing floating accommodation to set up a Crew Facilitation Centre (CFC) at the Tanjong Pagar Terminal.
Currently, MPA has enhanced precautionary measures for ships calling at our port to further protect crew, shore personnel and the local community.
Ships seeking to conduct activities such as repairs, servicing, surveys and inspections which require shore personnel to board the ship must inform the Port Master at least three days prior to the arrival of the ship and undertake additional measures including disinfecting working areas in the ship.
Crew Change Procedures
Singapore has been enabling crew change of all nationalities from ships of different flags, during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Almost all Singapore-registered ships (SRS) managed to conduct crew change, including in Singapore, with the exception of 2% of the crew onboard with extended contracts.
Now, with effect from 1 September 2020, MPA, with the support of PSA Singapore, will use its existing floating accommodation to set up a Crew Facilitation Centre (CFC) at the Tanjong Pagar Terminal.
This is a self-contained facility with an onsite medical centre, testing and holding facilities. Dedicated to sign-on crew, the CFC will house the crew for up to 48 hours prior to them boarding their ships, if required, when their ship and flight schedule do not match.
The CFC will facilitate more crew change to take place in Singapore and keep both the ships and local community safe. Sign-off crew, based on current procedures, will proceed to depart Singapore or stay at existing designated holding facilities Seacare Hotel or accommodation vessel “POSH Bawean” for up to 48 hours, and be strictly segregated from the community.
According to the risk managed approach taken by Singapore’s Multi-Ministry Taskforce, crew members who have stayed at least 14 days from specific low-risk countries/regions to sign-on to ships in Singapore will either no longer be required to serve a stay-at-home isolation in the originating country/region or only serve a shorter isolation of seven days prior to departure for Singapore. Crew members from other countries/regions will continue to serve an isolation period of 14 days prior to departure.
To further protect the crew change process, ship owners, managers and agents are to ensure the pre-departure COVID-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests are carried out at government-approved or ISO 15189-accredited testing facilities.
“This dedicated facility for crew change and the Fund are the results of the collaboration between MPA, industry associations and seafarer unions. As shipping is a global business, we hope that more ports and stakeholders will join us in such initiatives, so that seafarers can continue their work and keep the supply lines of the world open”
stated Ong Ye Kung, Minister for Transport.