PORT OF HUENEME BRIEFING FOR CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)

Statement from Kristin Decas, CEO & Director, Port of Hueneme

March 26, 2020 – Click to view PDF of Kristin Decas’ statement, or read below.

Kristin Decas, Port of HuenemeThere is no doubt, we are in uncharted waters. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted many of our families and friends in the United States and globally. The Port of Hueneme appreciates the leadership of local agencies and government partners’ leadership who are tirelessly working to reduce the health impacts of the Coronavirus COVID-19 on our community and our nation. The Port is an economic backbone that provides for our local, regional and national economy; in times like these we are heartened by the efforts of all Port workers partners: our longshoremen, truckers, drivers, stevedores, terminal operators, forwarders, captains, vessel crews, warehouse workers, and all individuals that are serving in the global supply chain – a big “thank you” for your tireless work to keep these critical operations uninterrupted. Your efforts create the positive impact that drives local, state, and national prosperity and keep us healthy. In a time of instability, we want to assure you that we are doing everything we can to protect the health of our employees and partners and to continue to supply you with the goods you need during this challenging global situation. The Port of Hueneme is strong and quick to adapt and we are keeping abreast of the developing situation.

Keep safe, continue to be well, we will get through this together.

Ventura County Public Health’s Local Order

March 20, 2020 – Stay Well at Home – Ventura County Public Health Officer issues local order to prevent the spread of COVID-19, in effect Friday, March 20, 11:59 pm.

CLICK HERE to see a video message from Ventura County Public Health Officer Dr. Robert Levin

Per the order, certain essential activities will remain open, including many City and County government services; specifically “Airport and Port operations.”

CLICK HERE for more about the County Order, read FAQs and get other Ventura County information

CLICK HERE to read Ventura County Public Health’s Local Order to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19

Governor’s Executive Order – Port is Open for Business

March 20, 2020 – Governor Gavin Newsom issued a stay at home order to protect the health and well-being of all Californians and to establish consistency across the state in order to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Port of Hueneme is part of the Critical US Transportation Infrastructure Sector and therefore remains open for business in order to keep food moving and essential supply chains intact at this critical time of need.

The DHS Memorandum on Identification of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers During COVID-19 Response has identified critical infrastructure workers in several sectors, including Transportation and Logistics. Specifically, the following are mentioned: “Maritime transportation workers – port workers, mariners, equipment operators.” (see page 8 of this document)

The Port of Hueneme will continue to conduct best practices and take all necessary precautions to ensure safety for Port employees, customers, and partners.

CLICK HERE to read Governor Newsom’s Executive Order

CLICK HERE to read DHS Memorandum on Identification of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers During COVID-19 Response

New Port Policy #411 – Gatherings on Port Property & COVID-19 symptoms

March 19, 2020 – In an abundance of caution and the need to protect the interest of the Port community in these unusual times, the Port of Hueneme adopted a new policy today which reduces, regulates or prohibits as needed, gatherings for events or meetings of ten (10) or more people during the COVID-19 crisis; no person exhibiting any of the symptoms of COVID-19, including but not limited to a fever, may enter or remain upon Port property. Social distancing of 6 feet is recommended. The action was taken to help to prevent the spread of the virus.

CLICK HERE to read OHD Policy #411 on Gathering and COVID-19 Precautions

CLICK HERE to read DHS Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce

COVID-19 Precautions at the Port of Hueneme

March 17, 2020 – Today, as part of an emergency meeting and out of an abundance of caution, the Board of Harbor Commissioners of the Oxnard Harbor District proclaimed by Ordinance, a Local Emergency Regarding Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). The unanimous vote to implement Ordinance 241 by the Board allows for the Port’s CEO and Port Director, or her designee, to act as the Director of Emergency Services and ensure full and proper coordination with all federal, state and local authorities charged with implementing necessary measures to protect the life, property and welfare of all residents of the District, as well as that of the customers, tenants and other users of the Port of Hueneme.

CLICK HERE to read Ordinance 241

March 16, 2020 – The Port of Hueneme is open and operating as normal today. The terminal is cooperating with The U.S. Coast Guard as well as with U.S. Customs and Border Protection and we are taking all necessary precautions during this time.

Our Port offices are open with limited staffing; however, we are not accepting Port visitors, tours, or events at this time.

We will continue updating you throughout the week with any further changes.

There is no disruption to Port customers at this time. For information concerning specific Port of Hueneme operation or about changes in operations, please contact the stevedore or terminal operator directly.

For terminal schedule information, please visit: www.portofhueneme.org/vesselschedule

Business at the Port

The Port has activated its Communicable Disease Continuity of Operations Plan which includes social distancing for all employees and work remote direction for employees who fall into an at-risk category according to the Center for Disease Control.

Cargo operations at the Port remain uninterrupted. The Port is continually evaluating future steps to ensure the well-being of its employees, stakeholders, and the community.

Information for public Oxnard Harbor District Board meetings will be posted on the Port’s website: www.portofhueneme.org/board-committee-meetings.

Status at the Port of Hueneme

  • The Center for Disease Control (CDC) is in continual communication with our local Customs & Border Protection and Coast Guard who are our first line of defense if any infected individuals should be in route to the Port
  • The Port of Hueneme is business as usual, continuing to move cargo 24/7
  • This program’s primary intent is to protect the community and limit/mitigate potential spread of this disease within the United States
  • All our vessels follow mandatory reporting guidelines requiring them to report crew illness of any kind a minimum of 96 hours prior to arrival at Port
  • To date, there have been no reported cases of infected individuals arriving at any U.S. seaports, including the Port of Hueneme
  • No staff of The Port of Hueneme nor partners have been quarantined or diagnosed with a virus.
  • Non-essential District-related travel is banned until further notice
  • The Port’s ability to move cargo has not been impacted at all as a result of the coronavirus

Port of Hueneme Proactive Measures

  • Developed Continuity of Operations Plan/Response Plan which includes communication strategy to inform Commissioners, staff, Port stakeholders and the public of any important information.
  • Engaged and coordinated with Ventura County Emergency Medical Services, Health and Human Services and Department of Public Health for resources, and directives.
  • Coordination with USCG and Customs and Border Protection for vessel/vessel crew risk identification and mitigation.
  • Commenced proactive measures like additional soap, anti-bacterial gels and N-95 masks- N95 masks are being sought from partner agencies.
  • The CDC continues to be the lead agency. Our coordination with local/regional partners outlined from above is in accordance with CDC protocols/guidance.

Federal and State Mandates

  • Effective March 13th, the U.S. government suspended entry of foreign nationals who have visited from China or Iran in the past 14 days may not enter the U.S.
  • Travel restricts for Americans are in effect throughout Europe and Asia. For more information visit: https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel.
  • State Actions: The Governor of California held a press conference on March 15th to provide an update relating to COVID 19 and what the state is doing. He announced the following:
    • State’s top focus is helping seniors, specifically those 65 and older, and the homeless.
    • Requiring seniors over 65 and vulnerable individuals to practice home isolation.
    • Expedite effort to move all homeless encampments into hotels, motels and trailers.
    • Adding an additional 450 trailers to be deployed March 16th
    • State Guidance: At this point, there won’t be enforcement, but the Governor expects Californians to honor and step up for the greater good
    • Closure of bars, night clubs, breweries, wineries, and similar establishments
    • The guidance does not apply to restaurants; however, it requires restaurants to reduce their occupancy by half and practice social distancing. The Governor also strongly encourages, but is not requiring, limiting operations to delivery and pick up only
    • Shut down all visitation to all senior centers, independent living facilities, assisted living centers, and to include hospitals now.

Marine Safety

  • An outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a novel coronavirus (COVID-19) may affect mariners and maritime commerce. The CDC has updated their Interim Guidance for Ships on Managing Suspected Coronavirus Disease 2019. (see https://go.usa.gov/xdfyG) and Cruise Ship Travel to Asia (see https://go.usa.gov/xdfVP).

For More Information About COVID-19

CLICK HERE to read a Marine Safety Information Bulletin from the US Coast Guard – Novel Coronavirus – Update (Change 3) – March 16, 2020

CLICK HERE to read a Marine Safety Information Bulletin from the US Coast Guard – Novel Coronavirus – Update (Change 2) – March 13, 2020

CLICK HERE to read a Marine Safety Information Bulletin from the US Coast Guard about the Coronavirus – Vessel Reporting Requirements for Illness or Death – March 13, 2020