‘Below Deck Med’: How Many Hours of Rest Should The Crew Receive?

When chef Ben Robinson and the deck crew from Below Deck Mediterranean met for dinner, they complained about the amount of rest the interior team received.

Chief stew Hannah Ferrier and her interior team were just called out for failing to provide white-glove service to the guests. Plus, Captain Sandy Yawn expressed that Ferrier and her team could have done more in terms of service.

Captain Sandy Yawn, Hannah Ferrier, Aesha Scott
Captain Sandy Yawn, Hannah Ferrier, Aesha Scott | Greg Endries/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

When Robinson and the deck team talked, they asserted the stews seemed to sleep a lot longer than everyone else. As though it was a badge of honor, Robinson and the deck team talked about only getting a handful of hours of sleep each night, while still succeeding at their jobs. Meanwhile, the interior team seemed to receive an excessive amount of sleep. So is it normal for the crew to only sleep three to five hours a night on charter?

Ferrier addressed the issue on Twitter

Although Ferrier is busy working, her Google alerts wouldn’t leave her alone during the episode. “Hot damn! My google alerts have been going crazy with stupid men saying stupid shit. Calm down…boys. I’m busy working so no time,” she tweeted.

But later she addressed perhaps what those alerts kept telling her. “Hey guys! Sorry I’m not tweeting – very busy working! Just to clear it up. There are laws that stipulate hours of rest in the yachting industry. If people have an issue with me following the law then that’s really their issue.”

So what is the law on resting? A follower asked Ferrier and she wrote, “10 hours of rest a day or 77 hours a week.” When it came to Robinson’s comment about running on no sleep, she made this remark. “Funny that… Also amusing that he may not need as much rest when he comes in at the ass end of the season. But whatever… Some people are born salty.”

Ferrier is absolutely correct

Even though the guys were complaining the interior slept far too much, Ferrier was running her department according to regulation. “Under the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 (MLC), every flag state must establish either maximum hours of work or minimum hours of rest over given periods that are consistent with the requirements specified by Regulation 2.3,” Superyacht News reports. “These requirements dictate that maximum hours of work shall not exceed 14 hours in any 24-hour period and 72 hours in any seven-day period, or minimum hours of rest shall not be less than 10 hours in any 24-hour period and 77 hours in any seven-day period.”

Adhering to this regulation is vital as employees who work around the clock can easily become fatigued. “Fatigue is one of the most common causes of accidents in the maritime world,” according to Superyacht News.

However, some captains may find adhering to this policy to be a challenge in the 24/7 world of superyacht chartering. Plus, Superyacht News found that the department most likely not to comply is the deck department. “This is interesting because the deck is not typically thought of as the busiest department when on charter, therefore perhaps this reflects the pressure to work long hours on maintenance and repair when guests aren’t on board,” Superyacht News reports.