Freo's View

VIRUS CRUISE SHIP LEAVES FREMANTLE

Posted in city of fremantle, covid-19, cruiseliner, cruises, fremantle ports, tourism, travel, Uncategorized by freoview on April 18, 2020

 

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The coronavirus troubled MS Artania finally left Fremantle Port at 1pm this Saturday after an epic journey that saw 800 passengers being transported onto charter flights to Germany, while others passengers and crew were isolated in Perth hotels.

Several passengers and crew had the Covid-19 virus and had to be treated in hospital, but sadly some of them died here in WA.

The ship’s captain said the support and care they had received had been amazing.

Fremantle people came out in force to wave goodbye to the cruise ship, with the South and North moles packed with cars and Victoria Quay also full with people, and many said it was quite an emotional experience, as it was for me also.

I wish the trip back to Hamburg will be smooth sailing for the Artania crew and wish them well.

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE CHART&MAP SHOP EVICTED

Posted in business, city of fremantle, covid-19, travel, Uncategorized by freoview on April 8, 2020

 

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The first Fremantle business tragedy has been revealed with the owner of the Chart&Map Shop in Collie Street, which has been trading there for 25 years, announcing they have been evicted by the property owner. This is his story:

Hey everyone, amidst the turmoil of life in 2020 and countless unhappy stories, I have one of my own. We have been evicted.

This crisis has been tough on the map shop and we just haven’t been able to make the rent. After 25 years, this stupid virus and the unwillingness of some to negotiate have brought about the end of an era. And, honestly, it’s breaking my heart.

Near on two thirds of my life have been in this building. From the early days watching dad lean against the counter talking boat with the saltiest of dogs (I wish he was still here, he always knew what to do), through the times after mum and dad retired when we were still small and my sister and I would fill our days racing some crappy crossword or attempting to memorize all the capital cities (my favourite is still Ouagadougou), to the heady days before the likes of Amazon stomped on everything and into the struggles of modern retail. All of it has been in this place.

I promise it’s not the end for us yet, but it is the end of us in this building. I’m not sure what the next move is, I’m still figuring that out, but as of the end April our 30 days will be up and we will no longer be at 14 Collie Street. Just like that. So long you big beautiful blue bastard.

This is incredibly sad and so unfair on the business owners. I hope that another property owner will offer them a shop at an affordable rent, so that they can keep on trading. Life is a bastard sometimes!
It is my understanding though that the Prime Minister said there was a six months moratorium on evictions from rental properties, both business and private, so fight it!
Roel Loopers

 

ARTANIA CREW NOT FLYING HOME

 

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The latest from the Australian Border Force is that no plans are being made to fly the crew of the MS Artania, which is docked in Fremantle Port, back to their home countries.

Late last week we were told plans were being made for charter flights to the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia, where the majority of crew members come from, but that has now changed. Why?

WA Premier Mark McGowan has been insisting for weeks that the cruise liner leaves Fremantle Port, and Australian waters, but the status quo remains.

Roel Loopers

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FEDERAL GOVERNMENT DIFFERENT RULES FOR CRUISE SHIPS

 

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I do not understand why the Federal Government has different rules for cruise ships in New South Wales  than it has for cruise liners in Western Australia.

While we have been told that the MS Artania will remain in Fremantle Port for another fortnight to self quarantine, Border Force was literary out in real force off Sydney yesterday, and threats were made to the captains of the cruise ships that hefty fines and/or a five year jail sentence would apply if they did not leave Australian waters.

That of course comes after the absolutely unacceptable debacle of the Ruby Princess, where most states are still affected by the stupidity of allowing Covid-19 infected passengers to disembark in Sydney. Through them the virus has spread nation wide. Up to today 612 passengers and crew have been diagnosed with the coronavirus.

I am not arguing to let people rot and die, but I want to know why different rules apply in the Eastern States, and I want to know also if state and federal governments are going to invoice the cruise companies for cleaning up their mess.

I for one really like it that many of the Ruby Princess passengers are taking out a class action against the company, because what happened should never have happened, and someone in the NSW government should also get the boot. Incompetence can not be left unpunished.

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And from me a big thumbs up to the WA McGowan government for doing a splendid job under extremely trying circumstances!

Roel Loopers

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

 

STRICT CONDITIONS FOR CRUISE SHIPS ENTERING FREMANTLE PORT

Posted in city of fremantle, cruiseship, fremantle ports, health, Uncategorized by freoview on March 21, 2020

 

 

Cruise ships are still arriving in Fremantle Port but under strict conditions. The Pacific Princess arrived early this morning and will depart at 8pm, but WA Police will patrol the port to stop foreign passengers from leaving the ship for a walk around town.

Foreign passengers will only be allowed this disembark to enter a vehicle that will take them straight to the airport to fly back home, while Australian passengers will be allowed to leave the ship but have to self-isolate at home for a fortnight.

The  Amsterdam is also at berth at Victoria Quay, and the Seabourn Sojourn will also be departing at 6pm this evening, while the Vasco da Gama is due to arrive in Freo on Friday.

Roel Loopers

FREO CRUISING ALONG RESPONSIBLY

Posted in city of fremantle, cruises, cruiseship, fremantle ports, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on March 16, 2020

 

The City of Fremantle is taking measures to reassure the community that there is little to no risk associated with cruise ship arrivals into Fremantle.

The City has sought advice from the relevant authorities responsible for cruise ship arrivals, including Fremantle Ports and Tourism Western Australia, amid growing community concern relating to cruise ships and COVID-19.

Fremantle Ports has advised that it is fully complying with Australian Government restrictions as part of the nation’s response to COVID-19, which are an elevation of already stringent ship-entry controls:

No cruise ships leaving a foreign port, with the exception those en-route and which have already declared their destination as Australia, may arrive in Australia.

All ships, including cruise ships, must provide a mandatory declaration about the health of all persons aboard, before arriving in Fremantle.

The pilot seeks a second report direct from the ship’s Master when boarding the ship off the Perth coast.

If there is any doubt about the health of those on board, the ship is put to anchor and not permitted to enter the harbour until further checks are made at sea.

There were three cruise ships docked in Fremantle as of this morning.

None of these ships came from international ports within the last 14 days and all have been cruising in Australian waters. Each of these ships has undergone the screening process.

Fremantle Ports and Tourism Western Australia have provided the following specific advice with respect to protocols for the ships that were or are still in port and also any future cruise ship visits scheduled for Fremantle.

This includes strict entry protocols before the ships arrive in port‘The World’ cruise ship arrived in Fremantle on Friday 13 March with an estimated 140 passengers on board. Its previous port of call was Adelaide. They are currently in the process of disembarking from the ship to return home. Fremantle Port is yet to confirm a date for the ship and crew to depart. This ship has undergone the standard screening process.

The ‘Queen Mary 2’ cruise ship has been sailing Australian waters for well over a month, circumnavigating Australia and visiting numerous local ports. Passengers are currently in the process of disembarking from the ship to return home. The ship is scheduled to depart at 1900 hrs on 16 March bound for Southampton. This ship has undergone the standard screening process.

The ‘Costa Deliziosa’ cruise ship arrived from Albany and left this afternoon. It was previously in Adelaide with Mauritius scheduled as the next port. It is part of a world cruise that originated in Italy on the 6 January prior to the COVID-19 outbreak in that country.  Approximately 100 people disembarked from the ship today to return home, and the remainder of the guests and crew were not permitted to disembark. This ship has undergone the standard screening process.

Passengers that are disembarking ships will be going to the airport to take a flight home, or in the case of WA passengers, returning home.

The Federal government has advised that all international cruise ships have been banned from sailing into Australian ports for 30 days, with this decision subject to review after that time.

Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said that the strict measures put in place by Fremantle Ports and the Federal Government will ensure that there is little to no risk associated with cruise ships visiting Fremantle.

“COVID-19 is understandably creating some uncertainty around cruise ships, however given the strong measures being taken by relevant authorities the community should rest assured there is no impact to Fremantle,” Mayor Pettitt said.

“Whilst the City of Fremantle is not responsible for cruise ship arrivals, we have every confidence in the way that Fremantle Ports and the State and Federal Governments are managing the arrivals and we are working closely with them to ensure we receive accurate and up to date information.”

The Cruise Line Industry of Australia (CLIA) has also put measures in place to ensure cruise ships remain low risk for COVID -19 and have provided the following information:

The majority of more than 270 cruise ships globally continue to sail unaffected by the virus, including within Australasia – but with strict precautions in place.

CLIA ocean cruise lines have introduced stringent measures including pre-screening processes to determine a person’s travel and contact history. They will deny boarding to anyone who may present an increased risk.

Ships have medical facilities and medical professionals available around the clock to provide care in the event of illness and to prevent disease transmission.

Cruise lines are in close consultation with health authorities globally, including the World Health Organization, regional Departments of Health, and state health authorities.

No cruise ships have travelled directly from China to this region recently. Many of the vessels operating in this region have been in Australasian waters or on World Cruises for some time.

No passengers or crew are permitted to board if they have come from or visited South Korea, Iran, China (including Hong Kong and Macau) and any municipality in Italy subject to lockdown measures by the Italian Govt, in the 14 days before embarkation.

Cruise lines have extensive experience providing for a clean and sanitized environment, with daily procedures as well as enhanced efforts under Outbreak Prevention and Response Plans.

Reporting procedures are in place to ensure regional authorities are aware of any relevant illness prior to a ship’s arrival.

 

CRUISE SHIP LIMBO AT FREMANTL PORT

Posted in city of fremantle, cruises, cruiseship, fremantle ports, tourism, travel, Uncategorized by freoview on March 16, 2020

 

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There are three cruise liners an berth at Victoria Quay  with the Costa Deliziosa arriving early this morning, when presumably the Federal Government ban on cruise ships was already in place.

The Queen Mary II was scheduled to depart at 6pm on Saturday, then at 6pm yesterday and is now due to leave at 7pm tonight, after the Cunard Line cancelled the cruise to South Africa.

The World is also still in Freo, and the Seven Seas Mariner is due to arrive later today, but it looks like she’ll have to stay in Gage Roads and can’t enter the port.

Roel Loopers

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PASSENGERS REFUSED TO BOARD QUEEN MARY II IN FREMANTLE

Posted in city of fremantle, cruises, cruiseship, fremantle ports, tourism, travel, Uncategorized by freoview on March 15, 2020

 

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When the Queen Mary II leaves Fremantle Port late this afternoon it won’t have many passengers on board, because the Cunard Line cancelled the cruise to South Africa, and according to the Sunday Times today, 700 passengers were refused to board the cruise liner yesterday.

New Zealand won’t allow any cruise ships in their ports till at least June this year, so what will happen here in Freo and Australia?

Maybe it is time to rename Victoria Quay into Quay Sera, as a version of the Doris Day song Que Sera. Que sera, sera, whatever will be, will be. The future’s not ours to see.

Roel Loopers

UPDATE: Cruise ships banned from entering Australian ports!

WELCOME TO THE WORLD!

Posted in city of fremantle, cruises, cruiseship, fremantle ports, tourism, travel, Uncategorized by freoview on March 14, 2020

 

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Fremantle welcomes The World, and the Queen Mary II.

The massive cruise liners are at berth at Victoria Quay in Fremantle Port so go and have a look.

The QM II is departing at 6pm today. UPDATE! The Queen Mary II will now depart tomorrow, Sunday at 6pm!

Roel Loopers

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