20 March 2020
Who does this notice affect?
This notice is of interest to all vessel masters and shipping agents who represent international commercial and non-commercial vessels for the purposes of Australian biosecurity clearance.
What has changed?
- To assist the department in managing the Australian Government’s response to novel coronavirus (COVID-19), the Maritime Arrivals Reporting System’s (MARS) pre-arrival report (PAR) for commercial vessels has been revised. There are now three new mandatory COVID-19 questions:
- Has the vessel left or transited through a port outside of Australia in the last 14 days?
- Has any person on the vessel been in a country other than Australia in the last 14 days?
- Has any person on the vessel been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the last 14 days.
- New directions may appear on Biosecurity Status Documents (BSD’s) for crew and passengers in relation to personal protective equipment (PPE), self-isolation and disembarkations including cruise vessel day-tripping.
What do you need to do?
Complete your PAR in MARS as per usual. The three revised and mandatory COVID-19 questions appear in the Human Health section of the PAR in MARS.
The corresponding MARS offline forms have been updated for use from Saturday 21 March 2020. It is only when using any offline forms that you will need to download the latest DAWE versions available from the department’s website. Using the most current version of forms will minimise errors when a user is submitting information into MARS.
Vessel masters and shipping agents are reminded to read and understand the BSD directions and conditions, and keep a copy of the current document on board the vessel for the duration of the voyage in Australia.
Where can you find the forms?
The updated offline forms are available on the department’s website
Contact the department’s Maritime National Coordination Centre (MNCC) by email or phone 1300 004 605 (in Australia) or +61 8 8201 6185 (outside Australia).
Information and MARS supporting materials can be found on the department’s website under Vessels.
See the Department of Health website: www.health.gov.au for the latest key contact information, travel advice and the collection of factsheets for industry and the general public (Resources) on COVID-19.