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Passenger ships allowed to travel under GCQ areas told to reduce capacity by half

Passenger ships allowed to travel under GCQ areas told to reduce capacity by half
Betheena Unite May 20, 2020

Passenger ships allowed to resume operations in areas under general community quarantine (GCQ) must only travel with 50 percent of the ship’s regular capacity, the Maritime Industry Authority said.

Under the guidelines on the resumption of operation of passenger ships in areas under GCQ and enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), shipping lines must observe strict preventive measures in ferrying passengers in order to avoid a chain of transmission while in transit.

Aside from reducing the number of persons allowed inside passenger ships, strict observance of social distancing of at least one-meter at all time on shore and on board must be followed.

Shipping lines were also told to establish visible social distancing marks, handwashing areas, and disinfecting footbaths in all strategic areas outside and inside the terminal.

“No face mask, no entry” policy will also be enforced in all areas at all times. Mandatory temperature check of passengers and employees prior to entry in the facilities shall also be implemented.

According to MARINA, the same practices must be applied within the ships, including wearing of face masks of both passengers and crew throughout the voyage. Moreover, to lessen face-to-face transactions between passengers and employees, shipping lines are encouraged to establish an online platform for the purchase and payment of tickets.

Two medical workers must be deployed on shore and onboard vessels to conduct checking and monitoring of passengers, employees, and crew.

An isolation area must also be put in place on shore and on board in case a suspected COVID-19 case is found.

While passenger ships can finally resume travel in areas under GCQ, they are not allowed to enter any ports within areas placed under ECQ, MARINA said.