The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has banned the Papua New Guinea-flagged cargo ship Kiunga Chief from entering or using Australian ports for three months after the ship was detained for a third time in less than 18 months.
Kiunga Chief has been issued a total of 79 deficiencies by AMSA between 14 August 14, 2015 and May 29, 2017.The ship has now gone to an anchorage in Brisbane to undergo an inspection by its class society before it continues its voyage.
The deficiencies include failure to maintain critical equipment such as the ship’s engines and fire extinguishing systems, inadequate food provisions, unsanitary living conditions including defective toilets and water leakage into cabins, inadequate training for crew and evidence of crew exceeding 72 hours of work in seven days and being underpaid.
“These are serious and systemic failures on behalf of the ship’s operator which have placed the safety and wellbeing of the crew and the health of Australia’s marine environment at risk,” AMSA’s Acting General Manager of Operations, Stephen Curry, said.
“Despite numerous opportunities for improvement, the operator of Kiunga Chief has consistently failed to provide a safe workplace for crew or meet minimum applicable standards, and as such, this ship is unwelcome in Australian waters.
In 2016, the Kiunga Chief limped into the Australian port of Gladstone after suffering engine failure The 14 crew suffered from a shortage of food and were helped by Mission to Seafarers.