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Australia Bans Containership over Unpaid Wages

Liberian-flagged containership MSC Kia Ora has been banned from Australian ports for three months after the operator failed to ensure crew were paid their wages in full and on time. 

The ban was issued by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), who inspected the ship in the Port of Brisbane on March 14, 2018 after receiving a complaint which alleged that crew had been underpaid. 

Apart from the failure to pay the wages in full and on time, during the inspection AMSA found also other breaches like hours of rest and fitness for duty. Besides,

the inspection also revealed that two of the ship’s four generators were defective as well as the starboard main engine fire damper. In total, 24 deficiencies were issued to the MSC Kia Ora. 

The ship was detained the same evening. 

On re-inspection on March 25, 2018, AMSA was satisfied that all detainable deficiencies had been rectified and the ship was released from detention; however, immediately it was issued with a ban preventing it from accessing Australian ports for a period of three months.

“Substandard and poorly managed ships that place the welfare of their crews at risk will not be tolerated in Australian waters,” Schwartz said. 

MSC Kia Ora is operated by Vega-Reederei, the same company which operated the Vega Auriga, which AMSA banned in 2014. 

AMSA has banned five ships in the past two years.

 

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