SAL crews roll up their sleeves and get COVID-19 vaccination in US
28 MAY 2021
Seafarers are amongst those who have felt the greatest impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Global travel restrictions and strict quarantine rules have created isolated micro-cosmoses onboard vessels around the globe for more than a year. Albeit the virus continues to cause havoc, the expansion of vaccination programs in many countries now starts to bring light into the darkness.
The USA is in forefront when it comes to the vaccination of its citizens. Several US states are now offering vaccine also to crews of ships that are calling their ports in order to secure global supply chains and to support international seafarers. At SAL we quickly took the chance to explore if our crews could get hand on vaccinations when our vessels call US ports. Through prompt action from our US entity and our port agency, the crews onboard our vessels MV Frauke and MV Calypso were offered vaccinations during their port calls in Mobile, Alabama and Erie, Pennsylvania.
Captain Sebastian Westphal, Chief Technical Officer, SAL Heavy Lift states: “We are very thankful for this opportunity. Our seafarers are away from home for months, come from several different nations with varying national vaccination programs and are exposed during travelling and our global operations. The strict and effective preventive measures onboard our vessels ensure to keep the risk as low as practically possible, but this is not easing the social difficulties our seafarers face as a consequence of the pandemic. On behalf of the company and the fleet, I would like to express sincere appreciation to the US states that grant us this opportunity and to our team behind who has organised this very rapidly”.
Now the crews onboard the fleets of SAL, our joint venture partner Jumbo as well as the entire Harren & Partner Group are offered vaccinations during US port calls and we hope that other nations will follow this good example.
Captain Andreas Schuricht, MV Frauke concludes: “It was great that this opportunity was offered to us, and our entire crew onboard happily took a vaccination shot. Hopefully this will not only ease travelling for us, but also help to reduce exposure when we are in ports around the world. I hope that our other colleagues will soon get the same opportunity that we have just got – I am very thankful.”