BVI News

BVIPA drafts ‘pandemic plan’ to replace normal operations at ports

“All cargo entering the territory during the pandemic shall be redirected to the main island port at Port Purcell” — proposed BVIPA Pandemic Plan

By Kamal Haynes, BVI News Staff

The BVI Ports Authority (BVIPA) has developed a Cargo Vessel Pandemic Plan, the draft of which they have already released to local shipping companies.

According to the nine-page draft document dated May 9, the purpose of the plan is to guide agents, shipping operators, and other stakeholders regarding procedures and protocols to be followed during a pandemic.

The BVIPA said these protocols involve “enhanc[ing] the normal screening procedures of the handling of cargo vessel operations” during any such event.

“For better management, safety and security, all cargo entering the territory during the pandemic shall be redirected to the main island port at Port Purcell,” the introductory paragraph of the BVIPA draft document read. 

Plan to be activated by notice from HEOC

If approved, the plan can only become active once a ‘pandemic notice’ is issued by the BVI Health Emergency Operating Center (HEOC), the document further outlined.

Once the HEOC has declared such a notice, the plan will replace all normal processes within the BVI port, until the HEOC advises otherwise.

Key requirements outlined within the plan is for cargo vessels and shipping companies to submit a detailed history of the voyage from point of origin, an onboard pandemic plan to handle the virus, information regarding any change of crew members from the origin of the voyage, and cargo transfer agreement information.

Inspections

The draft document further said that agents and operators of vessels must adhere to all measures imposed by BVI authorities once within the territory.

These measures include border control inspections, the administering of medical assistance and quarantine if needed by the crew, sanitary health inspections, and sanitization of the cargo or vessel to the satisfaction of the local authority.

The sanitization of both cargo and vessels will be conducted with lead assistance from the Environmental Health Department and the BVI Fire and Rescue Service, the document stated.

Ill crew members must be reported

The plan also includes protocols that must be followed, should a crew member fall ill either on their way to the territory or while berthed.

Once a crew member becomes sick, the BVIPA and BVI Health Services Authority should be notified of the incident so they can make the necessary assessments to better prescribe the best precautionary measures to take.

The attached document will be reviewed today by the BVIPA board for approval, this plan would be used by all stakeholders when using Port Facilities moving forward.

BVI News understands that the draft document was reviewed for approval by the BVIPA board some time on Monday. It is not yet clear whether the document has been approved.

Copyright 2020 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.

7 Comments

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  1. Better says:

    This makes sense instead of holding people’s cargo hostage. Much better.

    Like 2
    Dislike 2
  2. YOUTH says:

    This is progress

  3. @Youth says:

    You think this is progress? It’s a result of a news article being written and a woman who thinks she is so powerful she answers to no one. The leadership of the Territory is a confused, crooked lot with no fresh ideas to govern. The bastardize what other islands are doing which only helps their cronies and not the people. In the Turks and Caicos the government reduce the Stamp Duty to 50% for ALL to stimulate growth. They also eliminated customs on building materials for 3 months. All this to stimulate the economy and bring in outside money. The BVI reduces the Stamp Duty for Foy’s friends and family. Good luck people. Your going to need it.

  4. Diaspora says:

    The difference among nation, state and territory is just semantics. A state and territory is basically one and the same. A nation and state is about political division, a higher archy. Generally, the nation is the higher archy and state in a lower archy. For example, the UK would be the nation and the VI and OTs the states. The word country can be used to mean other things, ie, regions (wine, coal country).

    Nonetheless, in the debate universe, this should not take precedence over life. Every life is precious and matters. A young woman’s life was taken prematurely. Condolences to the family and may the coming days, months, and years may you find and comfort. Rene Jack, rest in eternal peace.

  5. Snoopy says:

    Who replacing the gardener?

    Can I apply for the former chairman post?

  6. HAHA says:

    Pure damage control!

  7. BH says:

    Just making up restrictions has they go along, stalling business f so ppl can’t get them goods.., this just not making sense at all… you need to get big…home. You already in under hand, don’t know what makes them think you not going to continue your bad habits.

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