Four ships at cruise port London-Tilbury have been detained by the Coastguard (CG) following "concerns" about the welfare of their crew members.
The CMV-Cruise and Maritime Voyages-operated vessels Astoria, Astor, Columbus and Vasco da Gama are currently berthed at Port Tilbury-London (England) and have all been detained. CMV’s Marco Polo ship is currently docked in Bristol (at Avonmouth Docks) and has also been detained.
All 5 vessels are owned by Global Cruise Lines Ltd. The 6th CMV ship - Magellan - was not detained after no significant deficiencies were found.
The UK's MCA (Maritime and Coastguard Agency) surveyors have found "a number of expired and invalid Seafarers Employment Agreements, late payment of wages and crews who had been on board for over 12 months" on the ships. All of these go against the Maritime Labour Convention, MCA announced.
MS Astoria departed Manzanillo Mexico in mid-February and arrived at Port Poole UK on March 10. Astoria left Poole on March 14 and arrived in Tilbury Docks on March 11, where she remained throughout the lockdown.
MS Astor (out of Port Bremen Germany) and MS Vasco Da Gama (from Cape Town South Africa) have both been at Tilbury since May. MS Marco Polo has been in Bristol since March 22, having sailed there out of Aqaba Jordan.
The CMV cruise ships will be detained “until the breaches of the labour convention are resolved.”