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Maritime Safety

Volume 682: debated on Thursday 22 October 2020

Tugboats operate in our port night and day 365 days a year, and the pandemic has not stopped this. I recently went aboard a tugboat on the River Tees and was told of the lengths that the team at Svitzer Teesside goes to to ensure safe tugging operations along the busiest ports on the east coast. However, the crew expressed some concerns that other tug services do not conform to the same safety standards. Will the Minister agree to meet me and representatives from the sector to see how we can level up the safety of our tugs?

Tug and work boats are critical to the operation and safety of our ports. They ensure that vessels can complete the most dangerous part of their voyages into ports in safety. My hon. Friend has done a great service to those who work on the Tees by bringing this important matter to the House’s attention, and I would welcome the chance to meet him and representatives of the sector in order to discuss this further.