Mission to Seafarers - Seafarer Happiness Index (SHI) Q2 - are seafarers able to keep fit and healthy on board?

News & Insights 16 September 2021

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The Seafarers Happiness Index (SHI) Quarter 2 2021 results are a measure of the happiness level of seafarers amidst the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic, and with severe global and maritime industry issues again being brought to...

Mission to Seafarers - Seafarer Happiness Index (SHI) Q2 - are seafarers able to keep fit and healthy on board?

The Seafarers Happiness Index (SHI) Quarter 2 2021 results are a measure of the happiness level of seafarers amidst the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic, and with severe global and maritime industry issues again being brought to the fore.

The question 'How happy are you about your ability to keep fit and healthy on board?' saw satisfaction levels dip from 6.73 to 5.90/10.

Covid-19 has impacted crew changes around the world, resulting in many seafarers remaining onboard for extended periods involuntarily. As with many other aspects of life on board, the extended nature is taking a toll when it comes to exercising, diet and meals.

Seafarers who had been motivated to stay active lost that motivation after spending many months onboard. The same hum and noise of the ship, the same small but constant vibrations, the smell of paint, food, fuel, bulkhead, and voices have led to an unbearable weariness for many.

Lethargy and apathy set in alongside physical and mental exhaustion. Most are too tired from non-physical work to exercise regularly.

Some seafarers reflected on food and admitted that as the months wore by, they wished for a different fare as food on board can be monotonous. 

Some confessed to gaining weight due to a fatty diet, or lack of fruit and vegetables, with one saying, 'we have so many fried meals, I am looking like a hamburger'.

Extended trip lengths are impacting seafarers’ health, whether real or perceived. They feel tired, sick, and fatigued, with many in dire need of a detox from life onboard. It seems clear that the mechanisms, systems, processes and realities of shipboard life are impossible to sustain, and many are past that tipping point.

Food should be the least of their concerns and companies need to tighten the reins on this and ensure seafarers are provided with the necessary nutrients and have balanced meals with a variety that reflects cuisines amongst the various nationalities onboard.

Standard Club is a signatory on the Neptune Declaration on Seafarer Wellbeing and Crew Change as well as a proud sponsor of the Seafarers Happiness Index, a report by Mission to Seafarers.

Category: Loss Prevention

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