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Day of the Seafarer: Roderick Kamphuizen

25 June 2022

“The freedom of sailing, with or without the challenges it brings,” is what Roderick Kamphuizen (39), likes best about sailing. He has been Master on the vessels MV Bothnia, Beautranga and Beaumonde. “Getting cargo from A to B, anywhere in the world, through any kind of weather, together with a small group of people. But preferably with clean cargo and a smooth sea.”

Roderick started at Vertom in December 2016, after hearing positive stories from 2 of his former colleagues. And as far as Roderick is concerned, the stories were all true. “There is an informal atmosphere that creates a good cooperation between the office and the crew on board. And we are well taken care of. If we need anything, products or other support, they are always there for us. That makes our work a lot easier. And the growth that Vertom is experiencing also provides security, with an exciting vision for the future.”

There is no shortage of special experiences on board. The best experiences? “Sailing in the middle of the migration route of humpback whales near Western Australia. They jumped out of the water left and right. We also had a military reception in Vietnam, where all the high ranked generals wanted to have their picture taken with us being gigantic Europeans. We also helped a sailing yacht that ran into trouble due to bad weather in the middle of the Mediterranean.

“The most beautiful thing of all, of course, is my family at home – no vessel can compare to it. When people ask me if I think it’s difficult being away from them for so long, I always turn it around. I have many months of holiday each year. You don’t easily find such an extended period of time at home with my wife and three sons in any other profession.

“Nevertheless, sailing also brings challenges”, says Roderick. “Working together with four different nationalities in a small, close-knit environment remains a challenge. But this is hardly ever a problem. Although a lot of changes have been made in recent years. Fortunately, a lot of safety improvements and adjustments have been made to prevent dangerous situations arising. On the other hand, ports are more often closed to crews and cities are further away from ports. Also, working at night and all the paperwork involved in sailing is not always pleasant, especially in bad weather. Although this is the case with every company. At Vertom, I experienced that they will help out wherever and whenever possible, which is not the case at every company.”

We are looking for Dutch seafarers to join our Vertom fleet. Follow this link to go to the vacancy.