Freo's View

CRUISEHIP STAND OFF AT FREMANTLE PORT

 

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It appears there is a stand-off at Fremantle Port between the Federal Government and the captain of the MS Artania cruise ship. The ship has been ordered by Canberra to leave Fremantle and Australian waters but refuses to do so.

WA Premier Mark McGowan has rightly been very unhappy with what has been going on with the Artania, after it was allowed to berth in Fremantle when the captain said they only had seven Covid-19 cases on board. Once at berth at Victoria Quay it was suddenly revealed that 47 passengers had the coronavirus. They were transported to Joondalup Hospital, where two of them are in critical condition.

What if many more of the present people on board get the coronavirus? It would put strain on the WA health system, as they would occupy beds and care needed for Western Australians.

The coronavirus pandemic and it spreading a lot through cruise ships has shown that cruise operators no longer can go on with the modus operandi they have had for years. They need to change their ways, and maybe the type of aircon used on the ships, because gastro and other health scare outbreaks on cruise liners are not a rarity.

People pay big money for cruises and they need to be assured they are safe on board. The Covid-19 pandemic will no doubt make many people question if they should go on a cruise or not, and it is the kind of kick in the backside the industry needs to lift its game. They do have a duty of care for their passengers and crew and can’t just pass on that responsibility to the governments of the ports they happen to visit.

The ship was scheduled to leave at midday today, but has been taken off the list of today’s shipping movements by Fremantle Ports.

We don’t need your Thank you Fremantle signs, MS Artania, we want you to leave and go back home to Germany! Auf Wiedersehen!

Roel Loopers

 

CRUISESHIP PASSENGERS QUARANTINED ON ROTTNEST ISLAND

 

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About 200 Western Australian passengers, who arrived in Fremantle Port on the Vasco da Gama cruise ship, were transferred to Rottnest Island ferries late on Monday morning from where they sailed to the WA holiday island, where they are put into 14 day quarantine in the cottages and the hotel

There was a very long wait for the media at B Shed with some of the TV crews and photographers arriving at 8am, but the first ferry left just after 1pm.

Overzealous police officers pushed the media back all the way to B Shed, although the boarding of the ferries was changed from the O’Connor Landing to D Shed, so the media should have been allowed to shoot footage through the C Shed gates where they would still have been well away from the action.

Roel Loopers

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WEST AUSTRALIAN CLAIMS 70 ON BOARD HAVE COVID

Posted in city of fremantle, covid-19, cruiseliners, cruises, fremantle ports, health, Uncategorized by freoview on March 28, 2020

 

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If the story about the MS Artania in the Saturday West Australian is correct it is an absolute outrage and legal action should be taken against the ship’s captain and the shipping company.

Now that the Western Australian government has allowed the cruiseship to berth in Fremantle Port, with three charter flights to Germany organised to get the passengers out of our country, the captain, according to the West, has suddenly declared that more than 70 passengers have Covid-like symptoms. The ship initially reported that only five passengers and three crew members had symptoms of the coronavirus. Once at berth that suddenly became ten times more. That is unacceptable and unethical behaviour!

WA Premier Mark McGowan was very reluctant to let the ship come into Fremantle Port, and now we have to deal with the mess and a whole lot of foreign tourists will require medical care and accommodation for isolation that might be needed for Western Australians.

We all know what happened in New South Wales and are still hearing of Covid-19 cases that are linked to the cruiseship they allowed to berth in Sydney.

The Vasco da Gama arrived in Fremantle Port on Friday evening, and the MSC Magnifica appears to refuse to leave the WA coast, so what on earth is going on, and what is the federal government going to do about protecting the people of Fremantle and Western Australia?

The protection of Australian citizens must be a priority and should not be compromised!

Roel Loopers

MERCY FLIGHTS FOR ARTANIA PASSENGERS

 

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The German MS ARTANIA cruise liner was allowed to berth at Victoria Quay in Fremantle Port after all, when a compromise was reached and the Federal Government arranged with the German government for three charter flights to take the over 800 passengers to Frankfurt.

The passengers will embark from the ship straight onto buses which will be escorted and go directly to the airport. They are only allowed to take one piece of luggage with them each.

Peter Hughes Drive to the Passenger Terminal has been closed, so no one can get near it who does not have to be there

Five passengers and two crew members who have Covid-19 symptoms will be treated here in Perth.

I believe this is a good outcome for all, with a mercy dash to Germany that won’t compromise the health of Western Australians.

Roel Loopers

CRUISE SHIP CRISIS OFF FREMANTLE

 

Western Australia is going to have to deal with a big cruise ship crisis with the MSC Magnifica, which left Fremantle Port late yesterday, being denied to sail to Dubai, and is now off the Fremantle coast in Gage Roads.

Another cruise liner, the Artania, which was due to only refuel in Fremantle Port has reported 25 of her 800 passengers on board have respiratory illness and have requested medical help from the WA government. This ship will also not be allowed to berth in Fremantle.

The Vasco da Gama, which is due in Fremantle on Friday and end her journey here, has 798 Australian passengers on board, and they will be transported to Rottnest Island for a 14 day quarantine period, before being allowed to travel on home.

The State Government has requested help from the Federal Government in Canberra, as the issues are too big for the state to handle.

Premier Mark McGowan has made it absolutely clear though that the MSC Magnifica will not be allowed to return to Fremantle. She is fully stocked and fueled with no ill passengers, so there are other ports the ship can sail to, the Premier said.

Roel Loopers

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WHAT ARE THE FACTS ABOUT MSC MAGNIFICA?

Posted in city of fremantle, cruiseliners, cruises, fremantle ports, health, Uncategorized by freoview on March 24, 2020

 

 

The MSC Magnifica cruiseliner episode has been a bit of a shambles, with Premier Mark McGowan, the health minister and police commissioner yesterday all claiming during a national telecast that the ship carried over 250 passengers with respiratory problems, and hence the ship would not be allowed in Fremantle Port.

The Premier said the State was in contact with the Homes Affairs minister and that the Defence Force might be needed to help out, as it was too big for the State to handle.

But yesterday afternoon MSC put out a media statement saying that none of the passengers on board had Covid-19 related health issues.

What really are the facts, one has to wonder, with the West Australian claiming it had created ‘mass panic’ which is well over the top and irresponsible reporting. Yes, there was some angst in the Freo community, but it is pretty easy to keep passengers and crew aboard a ship and not let them disembark.

It did however create issues, with a whole Covid-19 ward at Charles Gairdner Hospital being emptied to cope with the expected mass influx of sick passengers. The patients on the ward were transferred to the Osborne Park Hospital.

It is quite clear that there is a lot of anxiety and misinformation in the community. Too many people make unsubstantiated claims on social media, and of course everyone has got an opinion, no matter if that is based on facts or not.

We need to learn to relax and accept the situation we are in, as it could take six months or longer before we are trying to get back to normal. Rumours and conspiracy are not helpful and neither is panic.

Roel Loopers

MSC MAGNIFICA NO SICK PASSENGERS

Posted in city of fremantle, cruiseliners, cruises, fremantle ports, health, Uncategorized by freoview on March 23, 2020

 

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THE WORLD HAS NOWHERE TO GO

Posted in city of fremantle, cruiseliners, cruises, fremantle ports, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on March 20, 2020

 

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It looks like Fremantle will be home for The World cruise liner for quite a while longer as the huge ship can’t sail to any overseas destinations, since most ports were closed to cruise ships coming from overseas ports.

Hopefully the berthing fee The Wold will have to pay Fremantle Ports will make up a little bit for missing out on other cruise ships arriving here.

Roel Loopers

 

SPECIAL FREO DEALS FOR CRUISE CREWS

Posted in city of fremantle, cruiseliners, cruises, fremantle port, retail, shopping, Uncategorized by freoview on February 25, 2020

 

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While the Majestic Princess cruise ship left Fremantle yesterday the Radiance of the Sea entered our port this morning, so there is a lot of cruise activity in Freo.

It is good to know that the special offers available under a City of Fremantle program targeting the crews of visiting cruise ships have been extended until the end of the year.

The City’s Crew Friendly program provides cruise ship crew with both a digital and hard copy brochure about where to access essential supplies and services like groceries, clothes, pharmacies and health clinics, as well as a guide to local restaurants, bars, entertainment and visitor attractions.

The program also allows local businesses to offer discounts and deals to crew who show their Crew ID.

The special deals offered through the Crew Friendly program for this cruise season will now be available to the large number of cruise ships being diverted to Fremantle outside of the normal cruise season due to concerns about coronavirus.

“Making more of the opportunities associated with cruise ships is a key priority flagged within the Destination Marketing Strategic Plan we launched last year,” Mayor Brad Pettitt said.

“While cruise ship passengers make an important contribution to the local Fremantle economy, it’s important not to overlook the crew.

“There are often a thousand or more crew on the larger ships, and most of them disembark in destinations to restock personal supplies, take some well-earned R&R or simply find Wi-Fi to connect with home.

“Crew are also much more independent and unlikely to be on pre-booked tours, so they are more likely to explore the city and spend in local businesses. We’ll be reaching out to the operators of all of the additional ships to make them aware of the program and to give local traders more of an opportunity to grow their business.”

The Crew Friendly deals are listed on the visitfremantle.com.au website and participating businesses are provided with a ‘Crew Friendly’ poster to put up in their shop windows.

A special link is included in the brochure to direct crew to the deals website.

Businesses wishing to participate in the program can do so by contacting marketing@fremantle.wa.gov.au with their offer or discount.

The City of Fremantle also provides cruise ship arrival alerts so businesses can stay up to date with what ships are arriving and when. Businesses can receive these alerts by simply subscribing to the City’s This is Business e-newsletter.

Roel Loopers

ANOTHER MAJEXIT ROYAL

Posted in city of fremantle, cruiseliners, cruises, fremantle ports, tourism, travel, Uncategorized by freoview on February 24, 2020

 

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She is a lot bigger than the Duchess of Sussex, but there was another exit of royalty, not from the UK but from Fremantle today. The Majestic Princess left for Penang at 1pm after two days in Fremantle Port. Bon voyage!

Roel Loopers

 

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