Precautions for Coronavirus

From ILWU Canada


Re: Novel Coronavirus 

We have been in regular contact with the different departments within our federal and provincial governments regarding the Coronavirus and its possible ways of transmission. The following is taken from Government agencies dealing in the federal sector. Page 2 supplies information on the Canadian marine industry.

General precautions for all frontline staff 

Standard precautions for all federal employees include:

  • Frequent hand hygiene is important.
  • Hands must be washed each time gloves are changed or discarded.
  • Wash hands before preparing, handling, serving or eating food.
  • Avoid touching your face, mouth, nose and eyes with unwashed or gloved hands.

Practice proper cough and sneeze etiquette. Cover your mouth and nose with your arm to reduce the spread of germs. Remember, if you use a tissue, to dispose of it as soon as possible and wash your hands afterwards. In addition to the above-noted general information and recommendations, the following precautions/recommendations apply to border services officers (BSO) who work with travellers:

  • Where possible, keep a distance greater than two (2) meters from an individual who appears ill (e.g., coughing, sneezing).
  • Have the ill person wear a surgical mask and use alcohol-based hand sanitizer at the earliest opportunity.
  • Isolate the ill person from others, when feasible, in a separate area or room.
  • Ensure a supply of tissues, hand sanitizer, masks and a wastebasket are available in the room

Temporary Direction and Guidance 

In order to contribute to the health and safety of those who work in and support the Canadian marine industry, and to reduce and/or eliminate the risk of spreading of the Coronavirus in Canada, the following is implemented on a temporary basis:

Foreign Flagged Vessels o Foreign flagged ships are to pay particular attention to ensuring that all required components of the 96- and 24-hour Pre-Arrival Inspection Report (PAIR) are completed in accordance with section 221 of the Marine Transportation Security Regulations (MTSR),

o Vessel Masters with crew members and passengers symptomatic of the Coronavirus are to advise Transport Canada Marine Safety and Security following transmission of the 96-hour PAIR; o In vessels with symptomatic crew members or passengers, Transport Canada Marine Security Inspectors will advise Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC)

Officials who will follow up directly with the vessel; o Based on that information, PHAC will provide followon direction; o In the event that PHAC determines that a crew member or passenger onboard a vessel to be at risk, Transport Canada Marine Safety and Security, in coordination with PHAC, will provide notification to others on a required basis (including but not limited to CCG, Pilotage Authorities, Port Authorities, TC Marine Safety, CBSA)

Domestic Vessels o The above procedures do not apply to Canadian Registered Vessels; o Domestic ships should report passengers and crew who are symptomatic of the Coronavirus to provincial and local health authorities; and o If a case of Coronavirus is suspected, Masters of Canadian Vessels are to advise Transport Canada and supporting agencies (Pilots, Ports etc) prior to others boarding or coming into contact with passengers from the vessel.

As some of you may have seen the World Health Organization has declared this virus a global emergency. This does not change anything as of yet in the above releases. As information comes out that changes the present conditions, we will get that information directly to the Locals and affiliates.

On Behalf of the ILWU Canada Officers, Rob Ashton President