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News 09 Apr, 2020

COVID-19: Coping with it at sea

Dean Crossley
Dean Crossley
Loss Prevention Manager

The virus and the measures needed to combat its spread are amplifying everyday stresses and the role these play in mental health conditions such as depression. 

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is an infectious disease whose common symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. While the majority of cases result in mild symptoms, some progress to pneumonia and potentially multi-organ failure. Originating in China’s Hubei province, the disease has spread worldwide to become a global pandemic.

The virus and the measures needed to combat its spread are amplifying everyday stresses and the role these play in mental health conditions such as depression – an article on reducing stress for seafarers can be found here. This has led to an increase in call volumes to mental health helplines.  

Crew members are spending increased time onboard as travel and immigration restrictions are severely curtailing the ability to make crew changes. This results in crew contracts being extended and an increase in workload, thereby often leading to a deterioration in the seafarer’s physical and mental health. The impacts of spending more time at sea, away from friends and family, is exacerbated by the possibility of self-isolation should the seafarer start to exhibit symptoms of the virus.


What material is available to help seafarers during this crisis?

As noted in our recent article on mental health, there are organisations such as the Sailor’s Society that seafarers can contact who provide specialist advice regarding the various issues they are facing.

Organisations such as ISWAN have produced videos to provide guidance for seafarers on the current pandemic, with a particular focus on mental health and strategies to combat negative emotions during the crisis.


Also, in Section VI of the IMO Circular Letter No.4221, information is provided on mental health coping strategies for crew members, predominantly focusing on relaxation through breathing exercises. Regulated deep breathing can help to manage stress, anxiety and panic attacks and is one of the best ways to control and alleviate mental stress by calming the brain and the body.

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    Tony Paulson
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    Mark Dunbar
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    Emma Forbes-Gearey
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    Tony Paulson
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    Tony Paulson
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    Corporate Director
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    Corporate Director
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    Tony Paulson
    Tony Paulson
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    Simon Hodgkinson
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    Simon Parrott
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    Tony Paulson
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    Emily McCulloch
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    Mark Dunbar
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    Mark Mathews
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    Dean Crossley
    Dean Crossley
    Loss Prevention Manager
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    Dmitry Kisil
    Dmitry Kisil
    Senior Loss Prevention Officer
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    Monica Lambrou-Whiting
    Monica Lambrou-Whiting
    Senior Claims Manager
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    Dean Crossley
    Dean Crossley
    Loss Prevention Manager
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    Simon Parrott
    Simon Parrott
    Underwriting Director
  • Loss Prevention 09 Dec, 2021
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    Dean Crossley
    Dean Crossley
    Loss Prevention Manager
  • Charterers & Traders 08 Dec, 2021
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    Suumit Madhu
    Suumit Madhu
    Senior Underwriter
  • News 08 Dec, 2021
    Case Study: Primary Delay Insurance for Fire Damage

    A bulk carrier arrived at a port during the evening hours of the day to discharge a cargo of wood chips destined for a paper mill. Upon opening of the cargo holds, cargo light clusters were lowered into the hold for adequate lighting to assist with cargo operations.

  • News 30 Nov, 2021
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    Tony Paulson
    Tony Paulson
    Corporate Director
  • News 25 Nov, 2021
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  • News 24 Nov, 2021
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    We are pleased to announce the rebranding of our Offshore product to “Offshore & Renewable Energy” to encompass the industry’s shift towards the renewable energy sector. Whilst we have always provided cover for members operating in the sector, it is important to recognise the growth and importance of this market.

    Will Tobin
    Will Tobin
    Senior Underwriter
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  • Loss Prevention 11 Nov, 2021
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    Dmitry Kisil
    Dmitry Kisil
    Senior Loss Prevention Officer
  • News 09 Nov, 2021
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    Tom Bowsher
    Tom Bowsher
    Group CEO
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    Mark Mathews has been appointed as Head of Product Development and Enam Hussain as Deputy Head of Product Development with immediate effect.

  • News 04 Nov, 2021
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    Suumit Madhu
    Suumit Madhu
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  • Defence 03 Nov, 2021
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    Nicola Cox
    Nicola Cox
    Head of Defence Claims
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    Tom Bowsher
    Tom Bowsher
    Group CEO
  • Loss Prevention 21 Oct, 2021
    Carriage of Containers on Dry Bulk Vessels - Things to consider

    Further to Notice to Members No.6 2021/2022 the Club continues to receive queries about this trade and especially how it may be carried out safely. The aim of this article is to highlight the practical aspects that need to be taken into account and measures that should be taken.

    Mark Dunbar
    Mark Dunbar
    Surveys Manager
  • Loss Prevention 20 Oct, 2021
    Taiwan - New Pre-Arrival Reporting Requirements for the Changhua Wind Farm Channel

    From the 26 October 2021, all vessels (excluding Taiwanese military vessels, government and fishing vessels registered under the Taiwanese flag) are to declare to Changhua Vessel Traffic Services (Changhua VTS) eight hours prior to entering the channel.

    Emma MacCarthy
    Emma MacCarthy
    Loss Prevention Officer
  • Fixed 19 Oct, 2021
    Parched Paraná

    The Parana River is an essential link in the logistical chain of South America, and for many, it’s their only means to drinking water. Following years of below-average rainfall and effects of deforestation in water catchment areas, the Parana is getting parched.

    Damian Mustard
    Damian Mustard
    Senior Underwriter
  • News 14 Oct, 2021
    New Claims video series launched together with Bills of Lading resource library

    Our Claims team today launch their Introduction to Bills of Lading video, the first in a series of videos aimed at providing helpful guidance to Members on several key topics.

  • Loss Prevention 12 Oct, 2021
    COVID-19 Outbreaks

    The Club has seen an increase in Covid outbreaks occurring on our Members’ vessels. Below are a series of questions that members can use as an aide de memoir, which will assist in the analysis of the COVID 19 incidents on board their vessels.

    Simon Hodgkinson
    Simon Hodgkinson
    Global Head of Loss Prevention
  • Loss Prevention 11 Oct, 2021
    World Mental Health Day 2021 - Mental Health in an Unequal World

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) theme for World Mental Health Day 2021 is 'Mental health care for all'.

    Emma Forbes-Gearey
    Emma Forbes-Gearey
    Loss Prevention Officer
  • Loss Prevention 05 Oct, 2021
    New Loss Prevention Bulletin Published - Cardiovascular Disease

    A new Loss Prevention Bulletin on Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) has been published to highlight the various conditions of CVD, their signs and symptoms, and preventative actions that an individual can take to avoid the onset of CVD.

    Emma Forbes-Gearey
    Emma Forbes-Gearey
    Loss Prevention Officer
  • Defence 04 Oct, 2021
    Clarification On Time Bars For Demurrage Claims

    Where a charter party states that “Owners shall notify Charterers within 30 days after completion of discharge if demurrage has been incurred” and completion of discharge is in one time zone and owners’ notice is sent and received in another time zone, which time zone applies when calculating the 30 days?

    Miguel Caballero
    Miguel Caballero
    Senior Claims Handler
  • Loss Prevention 04 Oct, 2021
    Indonesia - Vessels Fined and Detained by the Indonesian Navy

    The Club has noted an increased number of recent incidents regarding entered vessels being fined and detained due to illegally anchoring or drifting within Indonesian territorial waters. Therefore, we would like to remind Members of the precautions and their duty to notify local authorities.

    James Oliver
    James Oliver
    Loss Prevention Officer
  • Loss Prevention 29 Sep, 2021
    Vaccinations for Seafarers

    We are beginning to see countries offer seafarers who have not been vaccinated for COVID 19 the opportunity to get vaccinated whilst their vessel is in port.

    Simon Hodgkinson
    Simon Hodgkinson
    Global Head of Loss Prevention
  • Loss Prevention 29 Sep, 2021
    USA - Asian Gypsy Moth Mid-Season Update 2021

    The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) released updated guidance regarding the Asian gypsy moth (AGM).

    Emma Forbes-Gearey
    Emma Forbes-Gearey
    Loss Prevention Officer
  • News 23 Sep, 2021
    Our Charity Partners - One year on

    In September 2020, West launched it’s long-term charity program and made commitments of financial support to three select charities (National Oceanography Centre, Sailors’ Society and Blue Marine). We worked closely with each of them to initiate activities and projects that would make a real difference.

  • Loss Prevention 16 Sep, 2021
    New Loss Prevention Video Series Launched

    As training onboard holds a positive and important role in the development and promotion of shipboard safety culture and to further bolster the Club’s hard and soft copy loss prevention publications, we are undertaking the production of a new series of loss prevention videos.

    Mark Dunbar
    Mark Dunbar
    Surveys Manager
  • News 13 Sep, 2021
    Sailors Society launch Wellness at Sea campaign video

    As part of our charity support programme West has supported the Sailors’ Society Wellness at Sea programme. The Society has recently launched a video highlighting issues faced by seafarers and how the charity can help.

  • Loss Prevention 09 Sep, 2021
    China - Adjustment of Shipping Routes for Zhejiang Province Coastal Waters

    Huatai Insurance Agency and Consultancy Service Ltd have advised the Club that the main shipping routes off the coastline of Zhenjiang Province have undergone adjustments by the Zhenjiang Maritime Safety Administration (MSA).

    Dean Crossley
    Dean Crossley
    Loss Prevention Manager
  • Loss Prevention 06 Sep, 2021
    New REACT! Loss Prevention Poster Published on Hypertension and Stroke

    Two new posters have been added to the Club's REACT! Series of medical and first aid posters that specifically addresses the common health conditions that our claims experience shows are frequently experienced onboard.

    Emma Forbes-Gearey
    Emma Forbes-Gearey
    Loss Prevention Officer
  • Defence 02 Sep, 2021
    Arrived ship, NORs and demurrage time bars: Owners beware

    A recent unpublished LMAA arbitration award* for one of the Club’s owner Members has concluded that, where a vessel tenders NOR too early, namely at the end of sea passage before she has reached customary anchorage, not only does laytime not start to count because the NOR is invalid...

    Nicola Cox
    Nicola Cox
    Head of Defence Claims
  • News 26 Aug, 2021
    West are proud to be supporting the Graig 100 cycle ride

    Team West of England are proud to be supporting the Graig 100, a challenging cycle ride in support of The Mission to Seafarers.

    Tony Paulson
    Tony Paulson
    Corporate Director
  • Loss Prevention 26 Aug, 2021
    Pre-Employment Medical Examination (PEME) Programme - New Clinics in Georgia & Croatia

    Pre-Employment Medical Examination (PEME) Programme - New Clinics in Georgia & Croatia

    Simon Hodgkinson
    Simon Hodgkinson
    Global Head of Loss Prevention
  • Loss Prevention 19 Aug, 2021
    Cargo Declarations under the IMSBC Code

    Under section 4 of the IMSBC Code, Shippers must provide the Master or his representative with appropriate information on the cargo sufficiently in advance of loading to enable the precautions necessary for proper stowage and safe carriage of the cargo to be put into effect. They must also declare that the cargo information is correct.

    Mark Dunbar
    Mark Dunbar
    Surveys Manager
  • Loss Prevention 16 Aug, 2021
    Pre-Employment Medical Examination (PEME) Programme - New Clinics in Ukraine

    The Club is pleased to announce that we have selected and accredited another three clinics in Ukraine to our optional Pre-Employment Medical Examination (PEME) programme.

    Dean Crossley
    Dean Crossley
    Loss Prevention Manager
  • News 11 Aug, 2021
    P&IQ - International Group reports record year for education

    Since it launched in 2010, the International Group’s P&I Qualification (P&IQ) programme has grown to become one of the shipping industry’s foremost professional courses. In 2020, with its international reach and network, the IG P&IQ found itself perfectly positioned to deliver its courses and exams online.

  • Loss Prevention 05 Aug, 2021
    Port State Control - Concentrated Inspection Campaigns 2021

    The maritime authorities of the Paris and Tokyo MOUs on Port State Control (PSC) have announced that they will be running their Concentrated Inspection Campaigns (CIC) from 01 September 2021 to 30 November 2021. Furthermore, the Black Sea, Indian Ocean, Mediterranean, Riyadh and Vina del Mar MoUs have declared that they will be joining the scheme.

    James Oliver
    James Oliver
    Loss Prevention Officer
  • Loss Prevention 26 Jul, 2021
    Neptune - Bunker Quality Information Tutorial Video Now Available

    We are pleased to announce that a tutorial video has been added within the bunker information section of the Club's global information portal Neptune to support the users and allow for a better overall experience to be obtained when using the bunker information.

    Dmitry Kisil
    Dmitry Kisil
    Senior Loss Prevention Officer
  • News 22 Jul, 2021
    COVID-19 Vaccination of Seafarers: IG P&I FAQs

    The International Group has published a series of FAQs dealing with the most frequently asked questions on P&I cover relating to vaccination of seafarers, which can be found below.

    Monica Lambrou-Whiting
    Monica Lambrou-Whiting
    Senior Claims Manager
  • Loss Prevention 19 Jul, 2021
    Spain - Heightened Risk of Stowaways in Ceuta

    Bull Marine Surveyors S.L. has advised the Club about the significantly heightened risk of persons attempting to stow away on vessels during bunker and standard calls at the port of Ceuta.

    Dean Crossley
    Dean Crossley
    Loss Prevention Manager
  • Loss Prevention 15 Jul, 2021