Commenting on the collision between two passenger vessels in Hong Kong waters on Monday, ITF (International Transport Workers’ Federation) seafarers’ section secretary John Whitlow said: “This is a sad loss of life, and all of us must be thinking of those affected, and of the continuing rescue and medical efforts.”
He continued: “It is deeply regrettable that crew members from both vessels have been arrested. The priority should be to quickly discover what has gone wrong and stop it happening again – not to risk terrifying crews into silence.”
Captain TT Chung, general secretary of the MNOGHK (The Merchant Navy Officers' Guild-Hong Kong), and member of the ITF’s fair practices committee steering group, said: “This accident has been a dreadful reminder of all that we strive to prevent. Our thoughts are with all those who have been affected. We hope that the lessons to be learned will be learned in a reasoned way, and will not be clouded by any reflexive search for someone to blame.”
Tomorrow, 4 October, has been set as an official day of mourning in Hong Kong for the victims of the accident.