The second annual Tristar ‘Safety at Sea’ conference was held virtually on December 9 with more than 1,000 attendees across the globe with a majority of officers and crew attending from aboard their vessels. The event can be still be viewed for a month by registering through https://www.ubivent.com/register/24/tristar-safety-at-sea.
Speakers were from oil major Shell, global law firm Holman Fenwick Willan (HFW), global maritime health advocate Marine Benefits and Kuwait Oil Tanker Company (KOTC). All of them addressed mental health and Covid-19 issues faced by seafarers.
Eugene Mayne, Founder and CEO of Tristar Group, urged the industry to draw attention, with all relevant stakeholders, to the plight of seafarers during his opening address. He referenced a report from the Norwegian Hull Club that estimates there are about 400,000 seafarers trapped at sea due to the pandemic.
“Shipping is responsible for over 80 per cent of global trade and depends on more than two million seafarers world-wide. A broader recognition of seafarers as key workers is essential to manage their health and wellbeing,” Mayne said.
He further said that travel bans, embarkation and disembarkation restrictions have severely strained working conditions in the global shipping sector. As a result, seafarers are either unable to board ships or are stranded on board extending their contracts beyond their original tours of duty, often beyond the 11-month maximum period on board.
“This situation has had a severe impact on the well-being of seafarers and other marine personnel including the right to physical and mental health, freedom of movement and a right to family life. It also dramatically increases the risk to the security of maritime assets including potential for environmental incidents,” Mayne added.
The proceedings can still be viewed from the on-demand feature of the virtual conference which has crossed 1,900 registrants around 5pm UAE time (GMT + 4) three hours after the event ended.