Sign in with Facebook
  • |
Our Community
Latest Jobs
Latest Videos
Our Blog
Latest Events
Latest Members
  • grace michel
  • Asm Aurangzeb
  • Manbha Kupar Khongjee
  • Mohamed Shebl
  • Jibs Bernal
  • chandan pandey
  • Karl B. Lacerda
  • Delando Coriah
  • Mahesh Chalke
  • Parth Upadhyay
Show All

Maritime Forum

TOPIC: Challenging Work Patterns Handled by Seafarers

Challenging Work Patterns Handled by Seafarers 03 Mar 2015 11:32 #4401

  • Sengupta
  • Sengupta's Avatar
  • More Details
    • Posts:29
    • Karma: 0
Seafaring work patterns will vary based on a number of factors such as nationality and rank of seafarer, employers’ policies, type of trade and routes sailed. A typical length of contract for a Filipino rating is 9 months, with Sierra Leonians working average contracts of 12 months. Senior Indian & Western officers typically work contracts of between 3-4 months . Those working in coastal waters and offshore Installations may work shorter rotas, for example, two weeks to six weeks on & two to six weeks off.

Not only will length of tours of duty vary but so, also, will the ratio of work to leave time. Seafarers from developing countries, such as the Philippines, may take no more than 2 months leave before returning to sea for periods of 9 months or more, whereas senior Indian / Western officers may enjoy ‘back-to-back’ status working four months on and then having a corresponding four-month leave period.
Employment contracts may differ ranging from permanent employment with paid leave and other associated benefits to single contracts with no income during the leave period and no assurance of employment when the seafarer wishes to return to sea. However regardless of these (sometimes-considerable) differences in work patterns, all seafarers share the common situation that their work takes them away from home and their families for appreciable periods of time.

A further common aspect of seafaring work patterns is the irregularity of work schedules and uncertainties surrounding anticipated dates for joining and leaving vessels. Companies may experience problems finding ‘reliefs’ for seafarers who are due on leave, and the logistics of such a global industry along with the vagaries of nature may mean that a ship’s schedule may change daily making exact dates difficult to predict in advance.

In systems where seafarers work ‘back-to-back’ with someone of the same rank, personal situations
such as birth, death and illness may all serve to determine exact times of relief. Such uncertainty and unpredictability can potentially make the work pattern harder to manage for both seafarers and their partners.

Seafaring schedules, whether involving trips of weeks, months or even years, will involve a constant process of change, readjustment and transition for both seafarers and their families.

Unlike workers in many other occupations, the majority of seafarers do not, and indeed cannot, return home at the end of the working day, or even the working week. Seafaring means a life of constant partings and reunions. For seafarers, they must adapt from the drastically different environments of the ship to home life and vice versa, and for their partners, being married to a seafarer results in changes and upheaval as they adjust to sharing a life with a partner and then being alone again.

Opportunities for ship-shore communication for Seafarers
Opportunities to communicate ship-shore can potentially have a considerable impact on the experience of separation for both seafarers and their partners. Regular contact may be crucial in maintaining relationships with the family and shore-based life with a reduced frequency of contact potentially leading to relationship decline and eventual breakdown .

The importance of communication may further increase at various points within a voyage and throughout a sea career, for example, contact with home can be particularly important at times of ill health of family members when stress levels at sea can rise dramatically.

Advances in communication technology have undoubtedly increased opportunities for seafarers and their families to have contact on a more regular basis than in the past. Indeed, such developments have been found to be of considerable significance in the lives of work-separated couples. It has, however, been found that in general, the shipping industry has been very slow to utilise computers and telecommunication facilities, particularly on board vessels.

Indeed, research on seafarers communication patterns and opportunities has shown that much of ship-shore communications occurs via Inmarsat satellite communication services that are often prohibitively expensive. For those seafarers on both coastal and deep-sea routes, email can significantly increase opportunities for communication at greatly reduced costs. However email access to seafarers continues to be limited, often restricted to officers, and is impeded by the fact that many seafarers may not be computer literate and that family and friends ashore may not have access to email facilities. Developments in telephone technology mean that seafarers can phone home using
mobile phones in national and international waters as long as the ship is in port or within close range of land. However for those on deep-sea routes this service is limited and access is also restricted due to cost.

Such increases in communication technology have been accompanied by a corresponding reduction in access to shore-based telephone points to communicate home. Time spent in port has decreased dramatically over the last 30 years, with seven out of ten ships with ‘turn-around’ times of 24 hours or less and over a quarter of ships spending less than 12 hours in port.

Theoretically such turnaround times still allow time for seafarers to go ashore however problems are exacerbated by reduced crew size, increased workload in port and the isolation and insecurity of port locations.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
How to make new topic in Forum ?

Latest Forum Posts

  • No posts to display.

Forum Statistics

  • Total Users: 16.88k
  • Latest Member: asmaur
  • Total Posts: 3771
  • Total Topics: 3538
  • Total Sections: 12
  • Total Categories: 48
  • Today Open: 0
  • Yesterday Open: 0
  • Today Answer: 0
  • Yesterday Answer: 0
Golden Bollard 2017


The Global Maritime Community has many type of players and many are members of this Club. You may find them as per your need by using the filter below

Search Member by Rank / Role