Together we must end Seafarer Abandonment
The saddest truth for mariners in 2023 is that seafarer abandonment cases are rising. Beneath the cold statistics, the reality for crews is that those abandoned suffer unacceptable hardship.
Familiar to us is the long-held mariner’s lore: that the actions of Captains Uncourageous, those who choose to abandon vessels and leave seafarers to perish, is a most despicable act.
If you own a ship, manage one, or operate in any relevant role in the wider shipping industry, you must aim and unite to do zero harm to seafarers.
We’ve prepared this report to help you understand why you must act to end seafarer abandonment across your supply chain. Take steps of courage, join RightShip, and let’s end this together.
“When seafarer abandonment still happens, it is largely down to the ruthlessness of capitalism. Wanting to eliminate the issue means putting in place your best management practices to stop it. You can do this. RightShip tackles seafarer abandonment because it is critical to the security of the maritime industry and its reputation.”
Steen Lund, CEO, RightShip
What is seafarer abandonment?
Mariners deliver 90% of the world’s cargo. It is up to us all to show that we can do this safely and with care for our hard-working seafarers, who face unique risks those on land can’t begin to imagine.
The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) defines abandonment as when a shipowner can’t cover the cost of a seafarer’s repatriation and fails to pay wages for at least two months, has left seafarers without maintenance and support, or otherwise severs ties with the crew.
When seafarers, ship owners and managers get the opportunity to earn and make a living trading by sea, troubles arise to inflame the conditions for seafarer abandonment when parties are:
- Facing bankruptcy from under-costing a voyage
- Costing repairs on older vessels when it's cheaper to abandon them
- Left isolated by extreme events like the Covid-19 pandemic
- Combatting uprisings aboard and facing mutiny