Normal operations in Cebu ports amid COVID-19
CEBU CITY, Philippines – Amid protocols in place to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), it’s still business as usual for Cebu ports.
The Cebu Ports Authority (CPA) made this assurance in a statement issued on March 13, 2020, or a few hours after the Malacañang announced that Metro Manila will be under community quarantine due to the rising number of COVID-19 cases.
“The Cebu Port Authority has announced today that all Cebu port services will not be disrupted amid the continuing threat brought by COVID-19,” CPA stated.
The port management said their announcement applies to all passenger and cargo ships within their terminals.
“Though we are on business-as-usual in our port operations, CPA is also doing its share by ensuring that the risk of exposure of our port users is reduced or minimized,” the statement said, quoting CPA General Manager Leonilo Miole.
CPA advised passengers to be in their assigned terminals at least two hours before the scheduled voyages.
They said this is to avoid the hassle brought about by existing precautionary measures which includes the mandatory thermal screening for both arriving and departing travelers.
Ports in Cebu, including in Cebu City, are covered by an executive order issued by the provincial government that bans passengers showing symptoms of the disease from boarding any craft.
“All persons detected to be in a febrile condition or symptomatic at the Cebu baseport shall be immediately referred to the Central Visayas offices of Department of Health and the Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ), and for subports to the city or the municipal doctor or health facilities for proper assessment,” added CPA.
On the other hand, port authorities reminded crew members of international cargo ships that they would not be allowed to dock unless they could secure clearance from BOQ and the Bureau of Immigration.
“For international cargo vessels, CPA remains open in accepting the entry of international ships to our port. Our conditions are the non-disembarkation of vessel crew and the suspension of all visitation privileges extended to seafarers of foreign ships while docked in any CPA-controlled port,” Miole was quoted on saying.
The Cebu Provincial Government, at an emergency meeting on March 13, 2020, announced that all passengers arriving from Metro Manila, both through airplanes or sea vessels, will be subjected to thermal screening.
Capitol’s orders took effect immediately./dbs
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