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Completing the Ship-Shore Safety Checklist during the COVID-19 pandemic:

Effective completion of ship-shore safety checklist by tanker and terminal operators is an important step towards achieving safe and efficient cargo transfer operations during a ship’s port call.

At a time when the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting the global population, it is important that tanker and terminal personnel protect each other from being exposed to the virus.

While it is important to ensure the ship-shore safety checklist is completed, both tanker and terminal personnel should implement a range of precautions to safeguard against COVID-19 infections, including:

A) Pre-Arrival

  • Exchanging information related to health advice and any requirements from local Port Authorities and ship’s Flag State administration.
  • Completing any documentation that can be completed digitally, including pre-arrival forms, ship-shore safety checklists, MSDS and cargo transfer agreement information, and exchanging over email.
  • Agreeing communication protocols such as VHF channel frequencies to be used during port call.
  • Sanitising any equipment that needs to be exchanged by tanker or terminal and sealing it in a bag before exchange.
  • Restricting shore personnel boarding the ship or ship’s crew visiting the terminal to an absolute minimum. Numbers should be agreed in advance of ship’s arrival.

B) Access Control

  • Restricting access to pre-agreed essential personnel only e.g. Pilots, ship / shore personnel and those required to deal with an emergency.
  • Maintaining a minimum distance of two metres between all personnel.
  • Agreeing on a PPE policy before any personnel go on the ship or the terminal.
  • The ship may request that any terminal personnel are escorted and that the ships person open and close all doors and openings.
  • Placing sanitising stations at the ship’s gangway, the terminal and at entry points to accommodation, control rooms and other appropriate locations.

C) Pre-cargo transfer safety checks and pre-transfer conference

  • Digitally complete and share the ship-shore safety checklist, including agreement items. . This should be done by both the ship’s responsible officer and the terminal representative.
  • Mutually agree and record outstanding checks / agreement items over the VHF / Portable radios using positive confirmation from both parties before starting cargo transfer.
  • Achieving necessary tanker or terminal representative face-to-face meetings:
    • By having the meeting in a sanitised location on the dock with one representative from the ship and shore present.
    • On board the ship’s deck in a temporary office outside of the accommodation.
    • With the ship representative at the top of the gangway and the dock representative on the dock.

All of these meetings must be carried out with the with the representatives always maintaining a minimum distance of two metres.

D) Repetitive checks during cargo transfer

  • Agreeing the duration of repetitive checks during pre-transfer agreement.
  • Having the Responsible Officer undertake repetitive checks on board for the terminal representative ashore. If the shore representative wants to check the ship, they should limit the check to the deck area only.
  • Using VHF / portable radios to confirm repetitive checks on board and at the terminal at pre-agreed intervals.
  • Positively recording all communication made over VHF / portable radios in the relevant section of the ship-shore safety checklist and / or in the port log.

E) Post-cargo transfer

  • Exchanging completed sections of the checklist digitally after completion of cargo transfer.
  • Sharing cargo figures over the radio and consider authorising the ship’s agent to sign the bill of lading on behalf of the Master.
  • Providing feedback digitally to the ship’s Master and terminal representative.

Please find the ship-shore safety checklist in word and as a fillable PDF to assist with the electronic transfer:

Similar precautions exist for the completion of the bunker checklist.