Social distancing rule scrapped for day trips on Dutch charter vessels

Those on board traditional sailing charter ships in the Netherlands no longer need to stick to the 1.5-metre social distancing rules on day trips. This was reported by the Dutch association for commercial charter shipping (BBZ).

As a result, sailing vessels no longer have to limit the number of people on board. Sailing on charter ships is now considered a sport, which is why it is exempted from social distancing rules. ‘This means that there is no need to keep a distance from others on board and there is also no need for a face mask above deck. For the time being, this only applies to sailing vessels,’ states BBZ after consultation with the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management.

Both on and below deck, crew do not have to follow the Dutch 1.5-metre distancing rules. Below deck, however, a face mask is mandatory. There is also no catering service on board during sailing, which is only possible when the ship is moored.

‘Of course the people on board are allowed to eat and drink while sailing, but it must be avoided that people sit down in the bar or have a meal together,’ BBZ states on its website.

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus, the traditional sailing industry has suffered millions of lost revenue, because ships had to stay moored.

Source: ANP

Author: Mariska Buitendijk

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