02-2019: Protection of Harwich Haven Authority employees from passive smoking

UK domestic legislation requires all UK workplaces, with some limited exceptions, to be smoke free environments since 1st July 2007. Whilst this legislation does not encompass ships within its scope, Harwich Haven Authority wishes to protect their employees from the detrimental effects of passive smoking at all times whilst they are at work. Harwich Haven Authority, as an employer, has a duty to protect the health and safety of its employees whilst undertaking all of their duties regardless of the location of those duties.

There is significant evidence to show that smoking is the major, yet avoidable, cause of some cancers, stroke and heart disease. The adverse effects of passive smoking are well recognised and are more difficult to avoid as passive smoking can often be outside the control of the non-smoking individual.

To ensure that our employees are protected from the harmful effects of smoke whilst at work we request that owners, operators and masters of vessels provide:

  • a smoke free working area in all enclosed spaces that a HHA employee may be required to work in; and
  • a smoke free environment for occasions when a Harwich Haven Authority employee is not engaged on pilotage duties but is on board the vessel for other reasons, i.e. over-carriage.

All Harwich Haven Authority employees have been instructed not to smoke in enclosed areas of the vessel and may only smoke in suitably designated areas of the vessel with the permission of the master. Harwich Haven Authority employees must comply with all ship board rules and regulations.

Harwich Haven Authority would like to thank all vessel Owners, Operators and Masters for their co-operation in this matter.