Patrick Terminal have announced that an additional employee at their Melbourne terminal has tested positive for COVID-19. This is in addition to the first case reported on Friday evening.
Currently 32% of the stevedore’s workforce at the port out of action with 109 employees unavailable to be allocated to work and must serve a 14-day isolation period. This includes 22 close contacts from the first identified COVID-19 case. All 31 casual contacts identified from the first case have since received negative results and have been cleared to return to work today.
Patrick said vessels are currently berthing up to four days behind schedule and that delays at its Melbourne terminal are expected to increase “exponentially” as a result of these COVID-19 cases and the ongoing industrial action at the terminal. However, shortly after the second COVID-19 case was announced, the union withdrew its notices of industrial action at the Melbourne terminal.
Patrick did forecast that these delays will increase to 7 - 10 days by mid-October due to the industrial actions taken by the MUA throughout the month and the impact of the COVID-19 isolation periods. However they have not revised the forecast now the industrial action has been suspended.
Patrick have also advised that both VICTL and DP World have no capacity for sub-contracting however they will continue to explore this opportunity next week.
We will keep you updated as news comes to hand.