2020-004-Global-Novel Coronavirus Outbreak
1. Reference: (a) U.S. Maritime Alert 2020-002A.
2. Issue: An outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) will affect mariners and maritime commerce. 2019-nCoV was first detected in Wuhan, China and has since spread globally (see https://go.usa.gov/xdbS9).
3. On January 30, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared that the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) constituted a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.
4. Since the issuance of reference (a), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a Travel Health Notice –Warning Level 3 to avoid all nonessential travel to China (see https://go.usa.gov/xdbSN) and the U.S. Department of State increased its Travel Advisory for all of China to Level 4, “Do not travel to China” (see https://go.usa.gov/xdbVd). The CDC Travel Health Warning contains precautions to take to protect travelers and others if one must travel to China.
5. On January 24, 2020, the U.S. Coast Guard released Maritime Safety Information Bulletin (MSIB) 01-20, “Novel Coronavirus Precautions” (see https://go.usa.gov/xdbE7). Vessel owners, operators, and local stakeholders are advised to review this maritime specific guidance, which includes the following:
- Vessel representatives are required to report sick or deceased crew/passengers within the last 15 days to the CDC under 42 CFR 71.21. Regional CDC quarantine station points of contact can be found at https://go.usa.gov/xdDNY.
- The Coast Guard will continue to review all “Notice of Arrivals” in accordance with current policies and will communicate any concerns stemming from sick or deceased crew or passengers to their Coast Guard chain of command and the CDC quarantine station who will coordinate with local health authorities.
- Vessel masters shall inform Coast Guard boarding teams of any ill crewmembers on board their vessel prior to the Coast Guard embarking.
- Local industry stakeholders, in partnership with their Coast Guard Captain of the Port (COTP), should review and be familiar with section 5310 Procedures for Vessel Quarantine and Isolation, and Section 5320 - Procedures for Security Segregation of Vessels in their Area Maritime Security Plan.
- Local industry stakeholders, in partnership with their Coast Guard Captain of the Port, should review and be familiar with their Marine Transportation System Recovery Plan.
6. Illness of a person onboard a vessel that may adversely affect the safety of a vessel or port facility is a hazardous condition per 33 CFR 160.216 and must be reported to the U.S. Coast Guard COTP under 33 CFR 160.206. Suspected cases of 2019-nCoV must be reported to the COTP.
7. Per 42 CFR 71.21, vessels destined for a U.S. port are required to report to the CDC any sick or deceased crew/passengers during 15 days prior to arrival at the U.S. port. Guidance to vessels to report deaths and illnesses to the CDC can be found at: https://go.usa.gov/xdjmj. U.S. flagged commercial vessels are also advised to report ill crewmembers in accordance with the requirements of each foreign port called upon.
8. The 2019-nCoV outbreak is an evolving situation. This advisory will be updated based on new developments that may impact mariners or maritime commerce.
9. Contact Information: Maritime industry questions about the guidance and requirements in this advisory should be communicated to the local U.S. Coast Guard COTP office or to a vessel’s appropriate COTP for next port of call.
10. Cancellation of Prior Advisories: This message will automatically expire on July 29, 2020.
For more information about U.S. Maritime Alerts and Advisories, including subscription details, please visit http://www.marad.dot.gov/MSCI.