Port Calls Cause Stress
Seafarers sometimes dread port calls because of the increase in workload caused by the many audits and inspections when a ship is in dock, according to the second Seafarers Happiness Index report compiled and published by Crewtoo, the online social network for seafarers.
This increase in workload at port also caused a drop in satisfaction levels towards shore leave, as the amount of work often eats into the time available for relaxation. One respondent stated: “I am happy at sea but when our vessel enters port, it is a very hard time.”
In addition, a number of seafarers noted that getting ashore costs them at least $100, which presents a major barrier to taking shore leave. Increased stress during port visits and either reduced or non-existent shore leave gives seafarers very few opportunities to relax and unwind away from their vessels.
Overall, this second quarterly report showed a rise in seafarer satisfaction to 6.44 (out of a max 10) from 6.42 in the inaugural survey published in May this year.
There was an improvement in crew satisfaction with salary levels and an improvement in their feelings about the standard of food available on board. The availability of
exercising on board was also viewed more positively, as was the satisfaction derived from crew interaction and team building, which increased from 6.96 to 7.16 and became the highest score in the survey.
The intent of the Crewtoo Seafarers Happiness Index is to give seafarers a collective voice, and thereby enable the maritime industry to review and address the issues that are raised. Crewtoo’s Anneley Pickles said: “Happy people are loyal, motivated, and embrace challenges. If the industry really acts on the responses to these regularly updated surveys, it will not only reap the rewards with a more motivated, loyal, and hardworking workforce, but it will attract new talent to the industry, something which is sadly lacking at the moment.”