Cruise vessels are considered to be a high quarantine risk due to a number of factors, including:
- The large number of crew and passengers onboard increases the risk of spreading human diseases of quarantine concern
- Passengers disembarking with souvenirs from overseas countries which may contain wood, sand/soil, seeds, grass/straw or other plant material, all of which are subject to quarantine
- The large amount of food items and stores carried onboard
- The amount of waste to be managed
- Live plants onboard.
To assist industry to plan their cruise itineraries for the next cruise season in advance (up to two years), proposed itineraries must be submitted to the Maritime Travellers Processing Committee (MTPC) for approval by the Australian Government agencies concerned. The MTPC can be contacted at MTPC@customs.gov.au or www.customs.gov.au website.
Under the Quarantine Act 1908, cruise vessels wishing to enter a non-proclaimed port must apply for and be granted permission by AQIS, prior to arrival at the port.
In addition to the above requirements, cruise vessels must also submit the following documents to AQIS prior to arrival:
- Quarantine Pre-arrival Report (QPAR) - Cruise vessels entering Australian ports or waters are required to submit this form within 96-12 hours of their estimated time of arrival (ETA) at the first Australian port of call
- Ballast water reports – Ballast water reports are to be submitted with the QPAR
QPARs and ballast water reports must be submitted to the Maritime National Co-ordination Centre (MNCC).
Further Reporting Requirements
- Quarantine reporting form for cruise and naval vessels entering subsequent ports of call - the master must complete this form to report to AQIS any change to the information originally reported on the QPAR, prior to the vessel entering the next Australian port of call
- Vessel masters must advise AQIS of changes to previously reported information about crew/passenger movements, human health and waste disposal. Only the relevant section of this form should be completed to report the changes.
- This form must be submitted to the MNCC 12-96 hours prior to the vessel’s arrival at the next Australian port.
- Where illness on board the vessel is reported, the vessel master will be required to answer additional questions to assess the public health risk associated with the vessel prior to arrival at the port.
- AQIS Live plants vessel log – Cruise vessels are required to provide AQIS with a list of all live plants on board the vessel.
15 Feb 2013