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https://doi.org/10.1080/25725084.2023.2184604 10.1080/25725084.2023.2184604


The COVID-19 pandemic took the world by storm and disrupted global trade and maritime activities. Seafarers suffered immensely as most of their activities were affected due to the lockdown and travel restrictions placed by most governments to protect their borders. This had an impact on mostly their mental health as most of their routine became disrupted, travel plans were cancelled, and some fear of losing their jobs due to uncertainty. This research focuses on the impact the lockdown had on the mental health of seafarers and how it affects their human error probability value during COVID-19 by utilizing the HEART methodology. The conventional HEART technique is not precisely developed to be applied in the marine and offshore sector, so it was imperative to modify it to capture the key factors this research would be measuring which include fatigue, poor communication, depression, sleep deprivation, and how they influence the Human Error Probability (HEP) value of seafarers. To properly factor in these influencing factors, a questionnaire was developed and distributed to expert seafarers to weigh each factor in other to develop the Error Influencing Factor (EIF) table to further boost the accuracy of this research. For this research, the scenario used is a pre-mooring task carried out by seafarers. The result shows that the HEP value changes by over 55% from 6.1676E–2 before covid-19, to 6.1960E–1 during covid-19. Event Tree analysis was also carried out using the individual HEP values to calculate the probability of failure of the mooring ropes. The result shows that the probability of failure during COVID-19 is higher when compared. The application of this modified HEART technique confirms that COVID-19 lockdown had a negative impact on these factors that influence the mental well-being of seafarers.


This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Cite as

Onakpojeruo, D., Jeong, B. & Park, C. 2023, 'Mental wellbeing; Human reliability assessment of seafarers during the COVID-19 era', Journal of International Maritime Safety, Environmental Affairs, and Shipping, 7(1), article no: 2184604. https://doi.org/10.1080/25725084.2023.2184604 10.1080/25725084.2023.2184604

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Last updated: 17 March 2023
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