TUG company Svitzer and two unions headed to the Fair Work Commission in Sydney this week in an effort to resolve a dispute.
Svitzer is at loggerheads with the Australian Institute of Marine and Power Engineers (AIMPE) and the Australian Maritime Officers Union regarding port operating procedures at Fremantle and Kwinana.
An AIMPE spokesman said Svitzer was seeking to reduce the number of crew employed in the combined ports and to this end were proposing “major changes to the rosters”.
The spokesman said the AIMPE and AMOU were opposed to the changes.
“There have been a number of meetings where the basis for our opposition has been explained to the company,” he said.
“Problems include greater fatigue for crews and potential inability to deliver 24/7 service.
“We are following the procedure under the Enterprise Agreement when such matters are not agreed.”
Comment has been sought from Svitzer.