In 2016, AMSA issued marine notice 17/2016, which outlined Australia’s position on the maximum continuous period that a seafarer can serve on board a vessel without taking leave. It also outlined AMSA’s compliance and enforcement approach for these issues.
The environment in which the maritime industry is currently operating has created challenges for crew changes as countries are tightly managing their external and internal borders. To date, both flag and port States have been flexible and accepted extensions to continuous periods of service, without the seafarer taking leave.
While this flexibility has been essential to supporting international trade, it cannot continue indefinitely, as it will increasingly affect maritime safety and seafarer welfare. There is a limit to reasonable continuous periods of service.
The following paragraphs outline AMSA’s approach to the maximum continuous period that a seafarer can serve on board a vessel during the period 1 July 2020 to 1 October 2020. After 1 October 2020, AMSA will revert to the compliance and enforcement approach outlined in marine notice 17/2016.
No extensions of service without taking leave beyond 14 months will be accepted by AMSA unless the master or owner or both demonstrate satisfactorily to AMSA that all possible efforts have been expended to repatriate the seafarer without success and the seafarer has provided written confirmation accepting the extension.
(For further details and updates, as well as information about operations in Australia, contact GAC Australia at [email protected])
Source: Australian Maritime Safety Authority Marine (AMSA) Notice No.04/2020 dated 26 June 2020
02 Dec 2023
Panama Canal, Panama
02 Dec 2023