The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) have announced exemptions they may use during the COVID-19 period:
- Temporary crewing permits – This allows you to operate temporarily below the minimum crewing requirements that apply to the vessel if you experience crewing disruptions due to COVID-19.
- Exemption 8- Marine Safety (Temporary Service) – This exemption enables masters and crew to temporarily perform functions and duties on a domestic commercial vessel without the required certificate of competency, in specific circumstances (i.e. due to COVID-19).
- Exemption 6 Marine Safety (Periodic survey, equipment certification and compass adjustment), equipment certification and compass adjustment) –This exemption allows for flexibility for owners as to when their vessel undergoes periodic or loadline surveys, or more time to obtain a new certificate of currency for equipment, or to operate their vessel without compass adjustments that would otherwise be required.
- Exemption 7—Marine Safety (Temporary operations): This exemption is for owners and accredited marine surveyors of domestic commercial vessels who need to be able to operate temporarily without having the required certificates.
- Suspend a certificate of survey – You can apply to suspend your certificate for up to 18 months.
Extension of time for certificate renewals
Due to the current social isolation restrictions and uncertainty caused by COVID-19, and to assist seafarers during this period, AMSA have extended the duration of all National Law certificates of competency.
If you have a certificate of competency (not suspended or revoked) that expires between 26 March 2020 and 1 October 2020, you have an extension of six months to renew your certificate. You must continue to comply with the conditions of the expired certificate.
Shipping Australia update their page regularly for COVID-19: Shipping requirements and restrictions at Australian Ports
QLD Update 6/04/2020:
Queensland’s government has restricted entry to the state, which applies at all points of entry to the State, whether by air, road, rail or sea. As of 12:01 am on Friday 3 April 2020, only Queensland residents and “exempt” persons will be allowed to enter the State.
Exempt people are those living outside of Queensland working in a variety of sectors. People involved in the transport of goods or freight by land, sea or air, are exempt. Maritime industry personnel who work in Queensland but who do not live in the state (for instance, crew on harbour tugs or dredgers) must apply for a “Border Entry Pass” to take advantage of the exemption.
When travelling it is also recommended that personnel carry a letter from their company highlighting the name of their employer, evidence that they are a maritime worker, evidence that they are entering Queensland to go directly to work, and evidence of the location of the work location.