WA: Wharfies down tools in wake of Coronavirus Quarantine Breach

Wharfies employed by Qube Ports Pty Ltd have stopped work as a result of multiple breaches of the Australian Border Force Restrictions on commercial maritime vessels and crew

The restrictions, in place since the 29 March 2020, prevent the spread of COVID-19 and limit the risks associated with dealing with foreign vessels for Western Australian waterside workers.

Employees arriving for the day shift on 04 April 2020, witnessed crew members leaving the AAL BANGKOK berthed at the Australian Maritime Complex in Henderson in breach of the quarantine restrictions and without appropriate PPE which is also a breach of the quarantine restrictions

The AAL Bangkok is a Liberian bulk cargo vessel. The vessel’s most recent port of call was Kaohsiung within the Republic of China.

The Employees and Qube management witnessed the crew entering crane cabins and moving throughout the common areas of the vessel potentially exposing the Western Australian based waterside workers to the Virus.

Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union – Maritime Division (MUA) members have stopped work until the Australian Border Force investigate the breaches and determine the matter.

MUA WA Branch Deputy Secretary, Adrian Evans says “This vessel has breached its privilege of quarantine exemption and should now be required to serve it’s mandatory 14 days before our members can safely board.”

“This can only occur where the crew members on board the vessel do not show signs of any symptoms of the virus in that time”.

“This incident demonstrates to the Australian Public that reliance of Foreign Flagged vessels complying with the mandatory requirements is not a satisfactory solution.”

“Australian Border Force, Fremantle Ports, and the Western Australian Government need to make an example of this vessel and withdraw it’s quarantine exemption as a result of todays breaches. We need shipping lines to understand that there are serious consequences for breaching Quarantine Orders”.

The MUA understands that the AAL Bangkok was in Western Australia to transport prefabricated steel

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