‘Grave threats’ Abound on Today’s International Day of the Seafarer

‘Grave threats’ Abound on Today’s International Day of the Seafarer - Merchant Navy Info - News

Today marks the 14th annual International Day of the Seafarer. Being a sailor is not what it used to be. There are lots of issues and problems that people in the industry are having to face. This is something which International Maritime Organization secretary-general Arsenio Dominguez conceded in a video address to celebrate the day. He said, “Seafarers have been sorely tested in recent years, facing hostile acts from piracy or in conflict zones.”

He said that the lives of those who work on the high seas are under great threat.
António Guterres, the head of the United Nations, added his own thoughts on today’s International Day of the Seafarer celebration. 

International Day of the Seafarer

“Attacks on international shipping routes and acts of piracy are unacceptable.  Ships and seafarers must not be held hostage and hijacked. Seafarers should not be collateral victims in wider geopolitical conflicts.” Guterres stressed.

The 2020s are proving to be a very hard period to entice people to work at sea. This decade started off with lockdowns, and that had a very bad impact on people-to-people connections. Not just the seafarers but all walks of life took a great hit. Starting with the pandemic. This forced many thousands of seafarers to work in taxing conditions. They worked for far longer than the agreed contracts.

Crews have also had to face rising cases of piracy. Also, wars in the Black and Red Seas. Many have been sent to work on the so-called dark tanker fleet. This is where safety standards have been in the spotlight. Cases of crew abandonment have also hit record highs in recent years, while increasing discussion of automation and autonomous vessels have made some potential seafarers question the longevity of a career at sea as a professional. 

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