09.07.2021

The captain of the m/v Pacifica thanked the SUR for the help

Earlier, together with the fourth engineer, the captain was actually abandoned by the shipowner in the port of Busan. Starting from April 2021, even food delivery stopped on board of Pacifica (IMO8812801, flag of Russia). Thanks to the support of the Far Eastern territorial organization of the Seafarers Union of Russia (FETO SUR) and the ITF, the seafarers managed to defend their right to a salary in court and finally repatriate to Nakhodka on July 5.

So, the ship's captain Vasiliy Afanasyevich Popil took command of the ship with a crew of 21 people on September 4, 2020. And already on October 28, after several voyages, the refrigerator was sent to the port of Busan for repair. Soon the shipowner, the company Far East Shipping Management from Vladivostok, stopped paying bills for the work carried out. According to the decision of the Korean court, the refrigerator was arrested, and most of the crew was repatriated home. Only the captain and the fourth engineer remained on board to protect it and maintain its technical condition. Until March 2021, the shipowner supplied the seafarers with food, and then stopped doing this. The lack of food, the delay in wages for 6.5 months, the lack of any information about the terms of repatriation from the company all this forced the seafarers to contact the FETO SUR.

As the chairman Nikolay Sukhanov said, immediately after receiving the SOS from Pacifica, the union gave the crew detailed recommendations on what to do to get out of the current situation.

First of all, we informed the Consulate General of the Russian Federation in Busan and asked the captain to write a statement there. After all, in accordance with the decree of the Russian Government, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is instructed to provide assistance to our compatriots who are abandoned abroad without means of subsistence. The Government has allocated funding to the consulates of the Russian Federation to assist and repatriate abandoned citizens to their homeland. In addition, regarding unpaid wages, we advised the captain to contact the ITF representative office in Busan. When preparing the documents for the Korean court, on our recommendation, the seafarers turned to the ITF inspector in Vladivostok, Petr Osichanskiy, who, for his part, also provided assistance to the crewmembers ,-he said.

At the end of June 2021, a court hearing was held in Busan on the claim of the crewmembers of the Pacifica. On it, the court ordered the shipowner, after the sale of the ship, to pay the captain and the 4 Eng the salary arrears in the amount of 33600 US dollars. In the end, thanks to the joint efforts of the Russian Consulate General in Busan, the SUR and the ITF, on July 5, 2021, both crewmembers returned to Russia. As per information from the FETO SUR, Captain Vasily Afanasyevich Popil , who spent nine months on board the ill fated vessel and expressed his gratitude to the trade union, is an experienced specialist who had worked for many years in the Far Eastern Shipping Company. He is an honorary polar explorer who has participated in five expeditions to Antarctica. He started working in FESCO in 1971, immediately after graduating from the Odessa Maritime College, first taking the position of third mate on the ship Ulan Ude. Then the seafarer graduated extramurally from the Odessa Higher Marine Engineering School (OVIMU). The last ship commanded by Captain Popil in the FESCO was the m/v Captain Gotsky. The Seafarers

Union of Russia emphasizes that regardless of the any experience behind, any seafarer can find a job unsuccessfully and get into trouble. Therefore, it is very important to find out more information about the shipowner before joining the vessel. Everyone can do this by contacting the Seafarers Union of Russia, where assistance will be provided.


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