Fishermen allowed to sail

Small and commercial fishing vessels have been exempted from the Luzon-wide maritime travel ban but would be under strict monitoring by the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG).

In an advisory on Tuesday, the PCG said fishing vessels may continue their business as usual but must follow stringent health and safety measures, as well as obey when signaled to stop and follow directions when boarded for a thermal checkup.

The PCG advised fishing boat captains to prevent workers, who exhibit flu-like symptoms, from boarding the vessel or isolate and restrict them to a cabin if symptoms appear while onboard.

“Report to the PCG or return to port upon discovery of a sick crew. Deny sick crew access to cargo holds, gears, and catch as much as possible,” the advisory read.

For small-time fisherfolk, the PCG advised to postpone fishing when not feeling well, especially when symptoms of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) become apparent.

On Saturday, the PCG released a “no sail” policy that would ban the operations of all domestic passenger vessels and private watercraft.

According to the policy, cargo vessels, fishing boats, tugboats, and government vessels may be allowed to sail, “provided that crew members onboard shall be subjected to health protocols.”

Source: Philippines News Agency