Workers safety must be prioritised in the fisheries sector

The IFP is calling for an immediate investigation by the authorities into the origins of a Durban fishing trawler blaze that killed six people. The fire ripped through the trawler at Repair Jetty Two at the Durban dry dock late yesterday afternoon.

We are concerned about the accidents we are seeing in the fishing industry and need to emphasise the importance of safety for fishing employees. We appeal to the employers and the workers to remain alert and continue to prioritise safety. We believe that health and safety should always be a top priority, especially in the workplace. If you’re an employer, the safety of your employees is crucial to the continued operation of your business. An unsafe workplace could result in injury.

The IFP says an urgent investigation must be conducted in order to establish if any safety regulations were disregarded which resulted to this incident. In order to achieve and sustain productivity, workers must enjoy conducive working conditions.

The IFP says there should be no exception, South Africans in all sectors must be treated fairly and humanely in all their working conditions. We must ensure that every worker performs his or her work in conditions which are free from occupational accidents and diseases because only a safe and healthy worker can be productive. Investing in prevention of fatalities at the workplace by the employers is crucial.

Government must ensure that vessels are inspected by port state control authorities as this is the obvious solution, however vessels are often at sea for long periods of time. The role of the government is to use every effort to control or monitor our fishing vessels, it doesn’t mean that wrongdoing won’t happen anymore.

The IFP extends its heartfelt condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of the six employees who died in this accident, and we wish the injured employees a speedy recovery.

Mr Nhlanhla Msimango MPL
IFP KZN Spokesperson on Agriculture
078 302 4567/074 259 0820

Date: 15 February 2019