The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) has accused flag states of allowing the exploitation of crew by employers during the coronavirus pandemic.

In a hard-hitting report titled Beyond the Limit, the ITF claimed that flag states' acceptance of lower manning levels during the crew crisis is forcing seafarers to work longer and harder, which is directly impacting on safety.

ITF seafarers and inland navigation section coordinator Fabrizio Barcellona said: “Government restrictions on borders, travel and transit have made it difficult to recruit seafarers and some in the industry are responding by dumping more and more work on the tired and fatigued workforce who remain on ships.”