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(Photo: Port Authority Of Jamaica/Facebook)

New safety measures at Jamaica’s ports as coronavirus threat looms

(Photo: Port Authority Of Jamaica/Facebook)

The Port Authority of Jamaica (PAJ) has introduced additional safety measures and systems to protect its employees, stakeholders and users of the seaports in light of the novel coronavirus.

New safety measures have been implemented to mitigate against a coronavirus outbreak.

The safety measures and protocols are aimed at mitigating against a widespread outbreak from the seaside and to facilitate plans designed to contain and reduce its impact should the coronavirus be detected in Jamaica.

Includes in the new measures implemented since last month are:

· Specialised information on the management of the coronavirus garnered from the World Health Organization (WHO), Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the Ministry of Health and Wellness (MoHW) was disseminated to all ports

Visitors disembark a ship in Port Royal recently. (Photo: Port Authority of Jamaica/Facebook)

· All Port Facility Security Officers (PFSOs) were directed to host ongoing sensitisation sessions with their staff and all stakeholders that interface with ship personnel and passengers

· All ports are required to provide timely updates on the progress and issues that may arise from their sensitisation training sessions including those with the MoHW. The PAJ is monitoring and ensuring that these sessions are being conducted on an ongoing basis.

· New updates and developments from the WHO, PAHO and MoHW are disseminated to ports as they are received

The Authority has instructed Port Facility Security Officers to host ongoing sensitisation sessions with staff and all stakeholders who interface with ship personnel and passengers

· The PAJ is currently seeking to procure and install hand sanitisation dispensers and handwashing station at all of its ports.

There are existing border protection mechanisms and systems to mitigate against the spread of infectious diseases. The PAJ said it is also actively pursuing the procurement of heat sensing scanners as an additional measure for the detection of persons with abnormal temperatures.

The Marella Discovery during a recent stop in Port Royal Jamaica.
(Photo: Port Authority of Jamaica/Facebook)

Further, it is also in the process of establishing isolation rooms at its ports for quarantine purposes should the need arise.

Generally, all ships that are fully compliant with the MoHW protocols and have fulfilled the requirements are granted access to berth at Jamaica’s ports, it said adding that the Authority has been collaborating with the MoHW to ensure cruise and cargo lines are aware of the requirements to enter Jamaican ports as all ships are required to comply with the MoHW decisions.