“Together we can guarantee the safety of our people even better”

Sometimes what you need to function better is just around the corner. For example, IJmuiden neighbours Vattenfall and the Royal Dutch Rescue Society (Koninklijke Nederlandse Redding Maatschappij – KNRM) will jointly organize exercises and trainings at sea. And neighbours must help each other, so Vattenfall, together with its partners BASF and Allianz, is donating a nice amount to the KNRM to electrify its tractor fleet. 

When storm Corrie raged over the Dutch coast in early 2022, the anchor connection of the freighter Julietta D. came loose, causing the ship to collide with one of the foundations of the Hollandse Kust Zuid wind farm. The images of the crew being lifted from the drifting ship by helicopter are broadcast all over the world. A few months later, Jonas van Mansfeld, CFO Offshore Wind at Vattenfall, discovers that the KNRM was still at sea for hours after the evacuation to keep an eye on the ship, fighting against wind force 11 and waves of 9 meters high. He is deeply impressed, especially when he hears that the people at the KNRM do their work voluntarily and that the costs of the rescue stations are fully financed by donations and gifts. “We depend on the professionalism and commitment of these people for our safety at sea. Their dedication and commitment touched me.” 

Van Mansfeld approaches HKZ partners BASF and Allianz and finds support in Vattenfall’s O&M team in IJmuiden, where the work and maintenance of the Hollandse Kust Zuid wind farm are coordinated. Together they make a nice sum available: this year a one-off donation will be transferred and in the next five years the KNRM will receive an annual donation. 


The KNRM office is located in IJmuiden, a few steps away from Vattenfall’s O&M office. In the boardroom with a view over the harbour and the sea, fundraiser Jeroen Wooning explains that the money will be spent on making the KNRM more sustainable. “Operating sustainably means, among other things, that we want to make our lifeboats and vehicles sail and drive CO2 neutral in the long term,” says Jeroen Wooning. “We have been sailing for almost 200 years and want to continue to do so, but in the most sustainable way. Moreover, it is much more pleasant for the volunteers to work when a tractor or a ship emits less.” 

With the financial boost, the KNRM will investigate the feasibility of electrified, watertight tractors to launch lifeboats from the beach. Jeroen Wooning: “We have already purchased an agricultural tractor that we want to convert into an e-tractor. If that turns out to be a success, we want to equip all nineteen tractors with an emission-free drive in the future.” 

Good neighbour 

In addition to the donations, Vattenfall will set up exchanges between their teams and neighbour KNRM and they will go to sea together. “We are going to see if we can organize emergency exercises and safety trainings at sea together in IJmuiden, to learn from each other and to be prepared for possible future situations,” explains Jonas van Mansfeld. “Together we can guarantee the safety of people at sea, including our employees, even better.” 

Jeroen Wooning is also very happy with the collaboration: “The KNRM is responsible for the safety of people at sea. The wind industry is in full development and will only grow. This creates more shipping movements in the North Sea. It is good to practice together with Vattenfall and discover how we can find each other to ensure the safety of our volunteers and Vattenfall employees. Sharing knowledge about how Vattenfall approaches the topic of safety and how we can work together at the moments when Mother Nature does what she does. 

With the increasing activities for developing offshore wind energy, the safety of the people working there remains a top priority for Vattenfall. This fits in well with the mission of the Royal Dutch Rescue Society (KNRM): the rescuing and prevention of victims at sea. To support the KNRM in its challenging work, Vattenfall, BASF and Allianz – owners of the Hollandse Kust Zuid wind farm – together with Vattenfall’s Operations & Maintenance team in IJmuiden are giving the KNRM a financial boost to contribute to its wish for a sustainable future. Vattenfall customers can also ensure that KNRM volunteers can continue to carry out rescue work in a safe and sustainable manner in the future by donating their Vattenfall points to the KNRM. 

Photo: Gert-Jan Onderwater

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About Vattenfall

Vattenfall generates and supplies electricity, heating, cooling and gas as well as offering customers a variety of sustainable solutions. Vattenfall want to achieve fossil-free energy generation within one generation. This Swedish energy company is investing heavily in wind energy to achieve this aim. We are working towards a sustainable world, for now and in the future.