THE chief executive of an Aberdeen-based offshore support vessel specialist, Sentinel Marine, has welcomed the news that seafarers will be exempt from a 14-day quarantine for travellers returning to the UK.
Sentinel Marine has a fleet of 10 emergency response and rescue vessels (ERRV) operating in the North Sea, with a total crew of 300 across all vessels.
Rory Deans, chief executive, said: “This move to make an exemption for seafarers is very welcome. Without this, we would be unable to operate crew changes, but this allows for us to operate crew changes in a normal pattern.
“Seafarers and marine personnel are key workers and a play a vital role in the oil and gas supply chain. The exemption of these workers from isolation or quarantine measures when they return ashore, which may be applicable to other travellers arriving in the UK, is a very welcome move.
“Our crews have altered the length of their trips throughout the pandemic to ensure safety. This move means that they can be reunited with family sooner, and we can make the required crew changes to keep our vessels operating.
“We have crew who reside outwith the UK in other European countries, and it is reassuring to know that they not have to be quarantined for 14 days before joining their vessel.
“However, it will still take a period of time to return to normal tours of duty as many of our crew stepped up to undertake additional time at sea when we were unable to bring their replacement crews in.
“All of our team deserves recognition for this; without their flexibility we would not have been able to continue normal operations.”