How CoVadem installs its water depth measurement box in corona times

The CoVadem platform gathers data from inland navigation ships to map current and predicted available water depth on Dutch shipping lanes. Once a ship joins the platform, a CoVadem Box is installed on board. Like most shipping companies, CoVadem also came up with a corona protocol to be able to do so safely.

Now that the Dutch Government is slowly giving more room with the relaxation of the lockdown, CoVadem is picking up the installation of the CoVadem-Box again. The platform and Autena, which is responsible for the installation of the CoVadem-Box, have adapted their working method to minimise any possible contact with the ship and crew.

First of all, in accordance with RIVM guidelines, employees stay at home if they have (mild) colds. ‘We apply this measure rigorously; in effect, we put our mechanics in a kind of quarantine,’ says the company in a statement. ‘In this way, we want to ensure that they cannot bring the coronavirus on board.’

One engineer, carrying his own tools

The installation work is no longer carried out by two engineers. The engineer travels alone to the location, and also works completely alone on board. He only uses his own tools, which he cleans regularly. He is also the only one who uses and touches the tools and all equipment, such as telephone and notebook.

‘When making the appointment, we ask if there are any persons on board with health complaints that could indicate COVID-19,’ according to CoVadem. ‘In that case, we will postpone the installation until everyone on board is complaint-free again.’

‘If we are allowed on board, the engineer will only enter the areas that are necessary for him to carry out his work. He limits his activities to the work that is absolutely necessary. Preferably there are no crew members in the room. If this is unavoidable, the engineer will ask permission from the persons present before entering the room. In addition, he will keep a minimum distance of 1.50 metres.’

Additional measures also include the general ones of washing hands more often and keeping a minimum distance of 1.50 metres. The corona protocol is also laid down in Autena’s ISO 9001 quality manual.

Author: Mariska Buitendijk

Mariska Buitendijk is one of SWZ|Maritime's journalists as well as the magazine's copy editor.