Abandoned Crew Call for Help
The 19 Indian crew of the Hong Kong flagged bulk carrier MV Liberty Prrudencia continue to remain isolated in Zhoushan, China, after the owner allegedly became bankrupt.
The charity Human Rights at Sea received the following letter:
Good day sir,
We are the crew of Liberty Prrudencia we reached china in November but from mid December we are facing the problems. Since then in this intense cold weather there is no provision for heating in the accommodation. All crew are living in their freezing cabins.
There is also no hot water supply on board, we are using a heating rod to warm the water so that crew can get hot water from there. Picture is also attached with the mail. We are using this water from December 16. The crew is getting sick due to cold weather and skin problems.
We are managing this even without wages up to 22nd Jan 17. After 23rd Jan 17 our potential to work without wages in this weather and tough life is finished. Crew is still doing the work for the safety of ship and for survival. We don’t understand what else the owner expect from us even he is not paying us.
Even the Chinese yard watchkeeper for generator are feeling cold, and looking for warm spaces. We all requests you to please consider our serious situation. All we need is our hard earned wages to be cleared and signoff as soon as possible. Because working in these conditions, without wages is not acceptable and not safe.
Thanking you. Regards,
Crew Liberty Prrudencia
The crew have reached out to multiple agencies, including the owner, management, the Indian Consulate, international welfare organizations and the ITF, but still there has been no resolution for their outstanding wages owed since November 2016, with the effects of the non-payment reaching back to India and affecting the crew’s families. It has been reported to Human Rights at Sea that some crew who signed off in July 2016 are still waiting on their wages.
Conditions onboard are deteriorating: no heating, poor water supplies, and yet the crew remain to service the vessel as if they leave the vessel, they will not receive any wages. This is their last resort.
Human Rights at Sea has compiled significant evidence of seafarer neglect and breaches of the Maritime Labor Convention 2006. It will file a comprehensive report shortly and in the meantime is attempting to engage with authorities on the crew’s behalf.
Source: Human Rights at Sea
The opinions expressed herein are the author's and not necessarily those of The Maritime Executive.