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Passengers Need To Understand Risks On Ships: Koroilavesau

Passengers Need To Understand Risks On Ships: Koroilavesau
Minister for Fisheries Semi Koroilavesau.
December 31
11:50 2017

Passengers sleeping and lying anywhere on  ships is dangerous but the travelling public remains mostly unaware of the risk factors involved, says Minister for Fisheries Semi Koroilavesau.

“If you look at this really clearly without any bias it was really the travelling populations and the demands that they have,” Mr Koroilavesau said.

“We can be ignorant also as travelling passengers. A person might say: I’ve paid for my ticket and I’m going on that ship irrespective of what you people say.”

Mr Koroilavesau was speaking on the issue when pictures surfaced showing  crowds of people sleeping on the corridors of the Lomaiviti Princess V on Friday.

One of the founders of Captain Cook Cruises, Mr Koroilavesau said ship owners and the ports authority must work together with passengers to curtail any future problems.

“When the ship owner has sold the number of tickets and the space (on the vessel) is not enough it doesn’t matter because the passengers just want to go,” he said.

“(If they are stopped) people begin threatening the Government officials from MSAF and the Goundar Shipping officers from trying to control the crowd.”

Fiji Ports Corporation Limited Chief Executive Officer Vajira Piyasena claimed ship owners were not following schedules and selling tickets to more people than the vessels were allowed to carry.

Managing Director of Goundar Shipping Limited, George Goundar, firmly denied he overloaded any of his vessels.

He did however admit that his hands were tied on the issue of passengers sleeping anywhere on the ship rather than staying in the seats they paid for.

No ship can leave port without approval from the Maritime Safety Authority of Fiji (MSAF), which oversees issues of safety on the vessels.

MSAF chief executive John Tunidau did not respond to queries sent concerning the issue.

Edited by Rusiate Mataika

Feedback:  sheldon.chanel@fijisun.com.fj

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