Covid 19 Pandemic & Upriver
In view of the ongoing developing situation and different communications and instructions being issued by Sanitary Authorities of the Argentine Government we have chosen to send a consolidated daily report at the closing of working hours with an update of the day’s news.
National Holidays: Next National Holiday, Monday, October 12th.
Covid 19 Pandemic: After over 200 hundred days in lock down the National Government is seriously considering lifting the nationwide lock down. Not that things are very much better, but the decision will now be left to local authorities to decide how to best manage the constraints. In Buenos Aires and it’s suburban area it seem to be improving. Rosario however is on the rise. This also means that local flights and certain ground transportation may be allowed to resume during October.
Use of scrubbers in Argentine Waters: We make reference to the item published in our Circular of August 13th, 2020. The Argentine Coast Guard announced on October 02nd that the regulation which forbids the discharge of washing waters from scrubbers of National and Foreign vessels in Argentine waters has been suspended until further notice.
This suspension is valid as from October 02nd.
The only CoastGuard jurisdiction that does not allow the discharge of scrubbers in to the waters and maintains the prohibition is San Lorenzo.
River Parana Draft: Below the chart with the updated forecast for River Parana levels. This maintains the optimistic forecast of a better flow of water to the Parana towards the end of 2020.
*Actual measured height
The worst level of the River, measured at Rosario during May and June was in the range of 0.60 meters.
The sailing draft forecast for Upriver ports during October and November would be averaging 10.00 meters / 32 feet 09 inches.
Crew changes Argentina: The borders remain closed and crew changes are not permitted. Despite earlier optimism plans to restart internal flights as from October 01st have been postponed until further notice. On this basis it is difficult to be optimistic regarding the opening of the border restrictions and regular international flights within the coming weeks.
Crew changes Uruguay: On and Off signing crew are allowed entry into the country under very strict restrictions. On signers must have a prior negative Covid 19 test 72 hours prior being allowed entry. Crew members boarding are not allowed to stop at any stage between landing at the airport (Montevideo) and boarding the vessel. Once onboard the vessel they must comply with a 14 day quarantine onboard before being allowed to work. Departing crew must proceed directly from the vessel to the airport. Considering that there are at the moment few international flights these requirements make it very difficult for crew members to enter or leave the country. Additionally to this before a boarding crew member is allowed permit of entry the agreement of Sanitary Authority, Immigration and CoastGuard must be obtained.
The best way of achieving a successful crew change at Uruguay is to have the vessel do this OUTBOUND at Recalada/Montevideo anchorage when the vessel’s schedule is not bound so much by weather and port congestions.
Crew changes Chile: Chilean colleagues have supplied us with the following detail to proceed for crew changes in Chile:
Kindly note a protocol has been issued to allow crew changes while our borders are still closed for non Chilean citizens, here you will find requiring points to be complied with:
Authorities are allowing for crew members to disembark and take their flights from Chile to their final destinations with following conditions:
• Providing all information about the intended disembarking to the Health, Maritime, Migration Authorities via Agency at least 72 hours in advance including names, citizenship, passport number, name of vessel, and full repatriation flight schedule (attached file with data requested).
• Completing a 14 days quarantine period on board in good health condition since the vessel sailed from the last foreign port prior to disembarking in Chile.
• Submitting the on-line affidavit for travelers to prevent Coronavirus diseases (attached).
• Not presenting any symptoms of COVID19 (Health Service may order a health check at any time)
• Moving directly from the disembarking port to the airport or designated sanitary residence (in case 14 days of quarantine not completed). Max. period permitted in the hotel is 5 days.
• Wearing personal health protection items such as face mask, face shield, gloves and hand sanitizer while in our country.
We need to send to Ministry of Transport a few points (attached file with data requested).
Once received and double checked, they will send the approval to Consulate where joiner will come from.
The crew member must going personally to the respective Consulate, for taking a picture, fingerprint.
If all going well, the consulate will notify to Immigration, Health Service and sanitary borders, that crew member can travel and get in to Chilean territory.
Along with this a safe-conduct document will be provided. This document will be mandatory and must be presented on arrival to Chile.
IMPORTANT: Only crew members who does not require Chilean visa to come to Chile can apply to safe-conduct.
Once arrived to Chile.
At any time, must wear facial mask and carry own protective items for COVID-19
Immigration would check that all documents are in order, if so, will be provided the SHORE PASS (crew member immigration card).
The Health Inspector will make an evaluation of crew health, if do not have any symptom of COVID 19, her entry will be granted.
In case to have any symptom or to result positive in the preliminary Covid test, would be isolated and the entry would be denied.
Transportation from International airport to the port must be exclusive. So, domestic flights are not permitted and either intercity buses service (commercial).
Also important for both, on signers and off signers, is to have tentative flight schedule (complete route), this is necessary to start formalities with authorities.
We estimate about 5-7 business days to complete formalities.
Necochea: Port opened since October 05th at 0900 hours. The last closure was on October 02nd at 1045 hours due to 3.00 meter waves and high winds.
Necochea: All vessels arriving must comply with a 14 day quarantine. The 14 days are counted from the date of departure from the last foreign port of call, regardless of having Free Practique issued at a previous port of call in Argentina within the 14 day period.
Bahia Blanca: The 14 day quarantine for incoming vessels will be waived for vessels whose last port of call is Brazil. Nevertheless the previous regulation for other last ports of call will remain in place. This quarantine can be excepted if the terminal where the vessel will load produces proof that an earlier berthing is required.
Will keep you posted.
Antares Servicios Maritimos S.A.
For more information