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2020-06-10

COVID-19 Resource Centre

 

 

LAST UPDATED JULY 3, 2020

 

Below is a compendium of measures for international vessels operating in Canadian waters that have been implemented in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Specific measures included in the compendium include the following:


1.  Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) guidance
2.  Federal border restrictions

3.  Federal quarantine order

4.  Provincial border restrictions and quarantine measures

5.  Transport Canada reporting requirements

6.  Crew members and marine transportation workers

7.  Cruise ship restrictions in Canadian waters

8.  Ship inspections

9.  Pilotage requirements

10.  St. Lawrence Seaway

11. US Coast Guard

1. PUBLIC HEALTH AGENCY CANADA (PHAC) GUIDANCE

2. federal Border Restrictions

CLOSURE OF CANADIAN BORDER TO FOREIGN NATIONALS:

  • Rule: Foreign nationals (other than US nationals) prohibited from entering Canada until June 30; NEW To be extended to July 31 - awaiting publication of Order-in-Council

  • Exemption: 

CLOSURE OF CANADA - U.S. BORDER:

  • Rule:  Closure of Canada-US border (for non-essential travel) - extended to July 21 - Click HERE 

  • Exemption:

3. FEDERAL QUARANTINE ORDER

14-DAY SELF-ISOLATION REQUIREMENT WHEN ENTERING CANADA:

  • Rule: All travellers who are permitted to enter Canada from other countries must self-isolate for 14 days; Applicable nationally and Quarantine Order (in effect until June 30) - NEW  To be extended to August 30, awaiting publication of official order

  • Exemption:
  • Marine workers who are exempted must still maintain a distance of two-metres from others to the best of their ability, closely self-monitor, and self-isolate if exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms (PHAC directives). These requirements apply at federal and provincial levels

4. Provincial BORDER AND Quarantine Orders

  • Important Note:  Provincial border restrictions and quarantine orders may also be applicable in addition to federal requirements.

  • Click HERE for additional information and a provincial listing of relevant orders.

5. TRANSPORT CANADA - REPORTING REQUIREMENTS

VESSEL PRE-ARRIVAL

  • Report to TC Marine Safety and Security (TCMSS) - TC Special Marine Security Notice   

  • 96 and 24 hour Pre-Arrival Inspection Reports (PAIR); Pay particular attention to crew's health

  • Report if crew's health situation changes at any time after submission of 96 and 24 hour PAIR reports to TC Marine Safety and Security (TCMSS) as per coordinates below

  • Upon receiving a report, PHAC will issue directives to vessel and notify other entities as needed.

UPON ARRIVAL AT ANCHOR OR BERTH (IF COVID SYMPTOMS ON BOARD):

  • If COVID-19 symptoms suspected on board, inform local health authorities (click HERE for provincial details), ship's agent and TC MSS; Local health authority will issue directives


WHEN ORDERING A PILOT:

  • Ship agent to inform pilotage authority of crew's health


REPORTING BY OTHERS
(ship agent, terminal operators, etc.):

  • Should contact the responsible provincial or local health authorities


TCMSS DETAILS:


COVID 19 PHONE NUMBERS BY PROVINCE:

6. crew members & MARINE TRANSPORTATION WORKERS 

TRAVELING TO CANADA TO JOIN A SHIP (CREW MEMBERS & OTHER ESSENTIAL WORKERS):

  • Asymptomatic individuals travelling to Canada to join a ship are exempted from prohibition of entry into Canada for foreign nationalsTC SSB 09-2020

  • Documentation at airport:
  • Seafarer Identity Document issued in accordance with ILO,  Certificate of Competency, passport, proof of employment; and visa if from a visa-required country (see next item for instructions on obtaining a visa)
  • For other essential marine workers joining ships: A proof of employment 
  • All air passengers to have a non medical mask covering their mouth and nose during travel (including at airport) or will be refused boarding - click HERE
  • Canadian guidance to airlines at international airports and Canadian guidance to airlines at transborder airports   

  • The above TC SSB 09-2020 should be provided to individuals travelling to Canada to join a ship along with copy of guidance to airlines, and any relevant provincial documents


VISA PROCEDURE FOR CREW MEMBERS JOINING A SHIP 

  • NEW All joining crew members from visa-required countries must apply on-line for a temporary resident visa

  • NEW In order for a visa application to be processed on an expedited basis, applicants must do the following when filling out the on-line form: 

    - In the field entitled "reason for travel," select "Other" from the dropdown menu
    - Enter COVID-19 (exactly as written here)

  • NEW Although applicants will receive an automatically-generated "Biometrics Instruction Letter" following submission of their application, IRCC has provided the following additional guidance:

    • If a crew member resides in an area where the Visa Application Centre (VAC) is open, they should schedule an appointment to enrol their biometrics as per the instructions in the letter.
    • If a crew member resides in an area where the VAC is closed as a result of COVID-19, they should wait to hear from IRCC with respect to next steps, as the biometrics requirement will likely be waived in such cases (assuming no "red flags" in the applicant's file).
    • A worldwide listing of VACs that are open/closed can be found on this Government of Canada WEBPAGE. 

  • If an applicant has not received any communication about their application after 5 business days, they should contact IRCC's Travel Exemptions inbox to request an update (IRCC.COVID-TravelExemptions-Exemptionsdevoyage-COVID.IRCC@cic.gc.ca

  • Please click HERE for Transport Canada's guidance document on this issue.

72-HOUR EXIT REQUIREMENT FOR DISCHARGED CREW MEMBERS

  • CBSA officers will grant extensions to the requirement that discharged crew members leave Canada within 72 hours on a case-by-case basis, based on the exit plans presented and in consideration of COVID-related challenges of booking outbound flights, etc.

  • Crew members who expect to remain in Canada well beyond 72 hours after being discharged can apply to extend their stay in Canada by obtaining a visitor record.


SHORE LEAVE RESTRICTIONS:

  • NEW - "Controlled shore leave" permitted for asymptomatic seafarers for a period of no more than 4 hours; Must ocur at a shore-based welfare facility (e.g. seafarer mision) located either on port grounds or in a nearby location, or in a "designated area on port grounds"

  • No shore leave in the Arctic - until December 31, 2020

  • See TC Ship Safety Bulletin 18/2020 (issued June 30, 2020)for additional information

NEW GUIDANCE ON FACE COVERINGS FOR MARINE TRANSPORTATION WORKERS 

  • In cases where PPE is not already required and social distancing is not consistently possible, marine transportaiton workers should have in their possition (or have access to) a non-medical mask or face covering

  • Use face covering on risk-based approach according to workplace circumstances or when required by local authorities

  • See TC Ship Safety Bulletin 15/2020 for additional information
 

7. crUISE ship RESTRICTIONS IN CANADIAN WATERS

CANADIAN WATERS SOUTH OF 60th PARALLEL

Rule:  Vessels with overnight accommodations allowed to carry more than 100 persons (passengers and crew) prohibited from operating in Canadian waters until October 31, 2020

  • Exception:  A foreign vessel that is in the territorial seas of Canada exercising the "right of innocent passage" (transiting without stopping) in accordance with international law
  • Exception: A foreign vessel that is transiting the Great Lakes, Inside Passage, St. Lawrence River, St. Lawrence Gulf or St. Lawrence Seaway (and does not moor, anchor or berth beyond what is necessary for ordinary navigation)

CANADIAN WATERS NORTH OF 60th PARALLEL

Rule:  Vessels that are certified to carry more than 12 passengers prohibited from entering Canadian Arctic waters (waters north of the 60th parallel and the territorial sea in the vicinity of Nunatsiavut, Nunavik and the Labrador coast) until October 31, 2020.

  • Exception:  A vessel exercising its right of innocent passage, provided such vessel has submitted written notice to the Minister of Transport 60 days before its expected date of arrival in the above waters


OTHER SCENARIOS

Rule:  Essential passenger vessels and ferry vessels can continue to operate, provided they have mitigation measures in place to reduce to the spread of COVID-19.

Rule: All other vessels  permitted to operate subject to restrictions from their provincial, territorial, or local health authority

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Please see the following for additional information:

UNITED STATES

The US Centre for Disease Control has extended the No Sail Order for cruise ships carrying more than 250 passengers for another 100 days (effective as of April 15)

 

ship INSPECTIONS

Inspectors to maintain a 2-meter distance from others at all times; Inspectors (TC, CFIA, etc) can travel in the same vehicle/launch only if 2-metre separation can be maintained throughout the transit.

 

Transport Canada

Port State Control (PSC) inspections under the COVID 19 situation:

  • Although Canada will continue to use a risk-based approach in selecting vessels for PSC inspections (as per TC information): 
  • On-site inspection will be maintained mostly for foreign vessels identified as High Priority (P1) under regional PSC MOUs; Time onboard and interactions with crew will be minimized as much as possible during these on-site inspections
  • For other selected vessels (including foreign tankers identified as Medium Priority (P2)), verification done through document review - with the possibility of on-site inspection, if document review not satisfactory
  • In the event that a ship cannot fulfill convention/statutory requirement despite best efforts (e.g.: challenges to revalidate seafarer or ship certificates or delays in completing required audit, surveys, repairs, etc),  TC will take a pragmatic approach to compliance - in accordance with the Paris MoU and Tokyo MoU guidance on PSC inspections under COVID-19 situation - assessing situation on a case by case basis.

Canadian Food and Inspection Agency

Asian gypsy moth (AGM) inspections 

  • As a general rule, CFIA to conduct non-compliant inspections (at anchorage) and import inspections at a particular rate based on risk
  • Other measures may include requesting additional information prior to inspections to reduce the amount of time spent on a vessel and interacting with crew

Canadian Border and Service Agency

Additional requirements from CBSA regional offices:

  • CBSA's Atlantic region: Master/Agent must contact local CBSA office every time a crew member wishes to go ashore AFTER the vessel has been initially cleared

9. PILOTAGE

Atlantic Pilotage Authority (APA)

Notice to clients: March 27 & March 11  

  • Advising on preventives measures (including protocols for PPE, pilot boats and offices
  • APA reduced the number of pilot carried by boat to minimize risks
  • Pilots instructed to follow vessel's specified protocols 
  • Pilots and vessel crew to use different set of RADAR, ECDIS consoles, ROT indicators (when available)
  • Over carriage of pilots to ports outside of APA jurisdiction not permitted  
  • When requesting a pilot, report to dispatch center any person with symptoms
  • Sanitize access and wheelhouse prior to pilot boarding
  • Wherever possible, maintain safe distance of at least 2-meter

Laurentian Pilotage Authority (LPA)

 

Notices to clients: March 20  & March 12

  • When requesting a pilot, report to dispatch center any person with symptoms and advise if crew member's health situation changes thereafter;  

  • Confirm that LPA required hygiene and protection measures have been put in place prior to pilot boarding 

  • Maintain safe distance of at least 2-metre

  • Pilot boats and pilot waiting rooms are sanitized daily; LPA and Pilots Corporation ensure that pilots are in good health and follow all applicable government directives

Great Lakes Pilotage Authority (GLPA)

 

Notice to clients No. 2 & No. 3 

  • When requesting a pilot (12hrs notice), report to dispatch center any person with symptoms
  • Sanitize access and wheelhouse prior to pilot boarding; 
  • Wherever possible, maintain safe distance of at least 2 meters

Pacific Pilotage Authority (PPA)

Notice to clients: March 18 & memos Victoria Dispatch & Prince Rupert:

  • Information on transportation and logistics to move pilots to ships (March 30 -Notice 5/2020
  • Pilotage orders for out of district assignments (BC to Puget Sound or reverse) will no longer be permitted  (Notice 4/2020)
  • Onboard sanitation requirements prior to pilot board 
  • Wherever possible, maintain safe distance of at least 2 metres
  • Additional reporting requirements for vessel/crew arriving from high risk areas 

British Columbia Coat Pilots COVID-19 protocol - click here

10. St Lawrence seaway

Reporting requirements

  • In addition to TC Canada reporting protocol (see above TC section), vessel must promptly advice the nearest Seaway Traffic Control Center in the event of a crew member presenting COVID 10 symptoms    
  • Montreal-Lake Ontario section: Report as per amended Seaway Notice #17 - click here 
  • Niagara region-Welland Canal: Report as per amended Seaway Notice #9: click here

 

  • NEW SLSMC has removed requirement to submit  the "IMO Health Declaration Form” (Notice #19)

Operating requirements

  • SLMC restrictions on assisting ships requiring mooring lines for a lockage; Vessel requiring this service to contact nearest Seaway Traffic Control Center - Notice #9 and  Notice #17
  • Limitations to interfaces at Canadian locks AND SLSMC will not provide assistance handling gangways -  Notice 10 
  • NEWRestrictions for Pilots Boarding Ships at Iroquois Lock - Notice #18 

  • SLSMC has implemented screening measures for personnel requesting entry to a lock via access gates and for crew members requesting to disembark a ship at the locks

Modification to ship inspection

  • Inspectors will be boarding vessels with personnel protection equipment (masks, gloves, etc.)
  • Vessels to complete "Self-inspection Report for Foreign Ships" maybe granted an exemption from the SLMC Enhanced Ship Inspection (ESI) - Notice #19 Requirement to submit the "IMO Health Declaration Form" in addition to the "Self-inspection Report for Foreign Ships" has been removed)   
  • Ballast water inspection will still take place

SLSMC FAQ: click HERE

11. UNITED STATES COAST GUARD 

NEW: The following provides a summary of some of the information contained in the US Coast Guard COVID 19 Marine Safety Information Bulletins. For direct access to USCG MISBs, click HERE 

 

Vessel reporting requirements
  • USCG reviews  “Notice of Arrivals”; USCG Coast Guard coordinates with CDC quarantine stations, who will coordinate with local health authorities

  • Vessels destined for a U.S. port are required to report to the CDC any sick or deceased crew/passengers during 15 days prior to arrival at the U.S. port; See Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidance for cargo ships - click HERE for more details

  • Vessel to use CDC reporting form to report onboard illness - click HERE

USCG approach to Port State Control inspections  

  • USCG will not issue deficiencies or detain vessels for expired certificates, documents or mariner credentials until October 1, 2020

  • USCG may accept evidence such as vessel status within Qualship 21, previous port state or flag state exams, recent classification surveys, pictures, video, vessel logs, etc. in lieu of Coast Guard attendance onboard to credit a required inspection or exam; or may defer a required inspection or exam for up to 90 day

  • Click HERE for more details

Operational restrictions 

  • Entry restrictions on persons arriving from or through listed high risks countries, including Iran, China, WU states within the Schengen Area, United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland - click HERE

  • Cargo vessels that have been to the countries noted above or embarked crewmembers from these countries within the last 14 days, with no sick crewmembers, will be permitted to enter the U.S. and conduct normal operations, provided crewmembers remain aboard the vessel except to conduct specific activities directly related to vessel cargo - click HERE for more details  

  • Authority to restrict shore leave resides with Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the USCG , and CDC for medical matters. Ports/terminals must coordinate with local CBP, USCG, or the CDC, State and local health department offices. Nothing in the Seafarer Access requirements prevent ports/terminals from maximizing options to minimize direct interaction that may include use of camera systems, barriers, or other measures Click HERE

Marine transportation workers as essential workers

  • Commercial shipping sector identified as essential for continuous flow of commerce (including crew, port workers,  Vessel owners, operators, shipping agents, marine consultants, naval architects, marine exchanges, surveyors, etc.); US federal guidelines are advisory in nature and quarantine orders are up to State and local officials - Click HERE
General Guidance
 

 

  • US CDC Interim Guidance for Ships on Managing Suspected Coronavirus Disease 2019 - click HERE 

EUROPEAN MARITIME SAFETY AGENCY 

NEW: COVID 19 measures listed by EU member states - click HERE

 

 

The Shipping Federation of Canada is working diligently to provide marine stakeholders with information specific to their sector in response to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation.  We are liaising with key authorities to ensure the delivery of streamlined information and timely updates on protocols and practices.

 

We urge members to take the appropriate steps to contain the spread of COVID-19, preserve the health of their teams and take practical protective measures against the virus. 

 

DISCLAIMER: Although we will endeavour to update this webpage as often as possible, information issued directly by Canadian authorities and other entities interacting with vessels remains the official source to ensure compliance.