The Maritime and Port Bureau (MPB) of the Ministry of Transportation and Communications stated that, to ensure the health of the crew members, besides continuing to conduct health checks and immigration management for seafarers in accordance with regulations of the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) and actively promoting epidemic prevention behavior, the MPB published the “Seafarer Epidemic Prevention Health Management Measures and Guidelines” on April 14. The Guidelines will give shipping companies and shipping agent related businesses a plan to follow and help the Bureau establish a defense against the epidemic.
The MPB pointed out that, besides mandating two daily temperature checks for seafarers and providing instructions for personal health protection, including guidelines for epidemic prevention social etiquettes, the “Seafarer Epidemic Prevention Health Management Measures and Guidelines” also provides guidelines for seafarers to follow when berthing. Seafarers are not allowed to leave their ship unless for operational needs and unrelated personnel are not allowed to board the ship. All personnel involved in the process must wear masks and gloves at all times. When personnel who are feeling unwell are found on the ship, the Port Quarantine Department must be notified immediately. All personnel must follow epidemic prevention measures to help stop the spread of the disease. If seafarers are unable to leave their ship due to the epidemic and related certification is expiring, the shipping company can apply for extensions from MPB on behalf of the ship. The situation will be continuously reviewed as the epidemic develops.
The MPB reiterates that, in accordance with the policies of the CECC , starting from March 19, 2020, Taiwanese and foreign seafarers disembarking from their ships must first apply for home quarantine from the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control. The National Immigration Agency of the Ministry of the Interior will then approve the list of seafarers who have completed immigration checks. Seafarers must show this document at the port control station and it must be verified by port police before the seafarers can be allowed to enter the country. During the epidemic prevention period, all shipping agents and ocean carriers must ensure that their seafarers comply with immigration quarantine regulations. Facts must be honestly declared and home quarantine must be completed.
The MPB stated that, besides compiling the number of seafarers entering immigration daily, if unwell personnel are discovered during onboard inspections conducted by pilots or MPB personnel, the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control will be immediately notified. The seafarers and port operators will be reminded of personal hygiene protection measures, such as wearing masks and gloves, to stop the spread of the disease.
Contact person: Crew Management Division, Section Chief Cheng-Zhen Lin
Contact number: 02-89786288, 0930-995777