Monday 19th Nov, 2018

Wharfies raise money for “hero” bosun


THE Maritime Union says its members have raised $5000 for the bosun who helped rescue a stricken wharfie from waters off West Swanson Dock.

Indian seafarer Paul Vijay, the boson on board box ship Folegandros, jumped into the water and swam to the aide of DPWA wharfie Darren Blackman who had fallen over the ship’s side.

Mr Blackman suffered injuries to his leg and pelvis, however, the Royal Melbourne Hospital has since confirmed to DCN that his condition is ‘stable’.

A WorkSafe spokeswoman confirmed the incident was being investigated.

MUA Victorian Branch assistant secretary Bob Patchett said Mr Vijay was initially reluctant to accept any money.

“This money will provide him with the resources to buy many pairs of runners to replace the pair ruined in the rescue,” Mr Patchett said in a statement published on the MUA website.

“Vijay gave a wonderful speech to our comrades in Melbourne.”

In comments also published on the MUA website, ITF Australian co-ordinator Dean Summers said three shifts at DPWA had joined in to congratulate Paul Vijay on his selfless act.

“This is international solidarity at its best,” Mr Summers said.

“It shows the fundamental instinct from one worker to help another regardless of circumstances.

“Paul is a hero and worked alongside MUA members to undoubtedly save our wharfie’s life.”

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