Lifeboat organisations such as the KNRM (Royal Netherlands Sea Rescue Institution) do not allow “anyone” to build their vessels. Such boats have to be able to withstand hurricane strength winds and sea conditions, and must be built to the highest standards of design and workmanship.

In our opinion this means that the people who build these boats, from the director down to the most junior staff member, must be totally committed to their products, and must work in the knowledge that their products will have to be of the highest quality – not only handling natural forces at the height of storms at sea, but also withstanding heavy collisions with larger vessels as they go alongside. They must survive falling off meter-high waves and must also swiftly right themselves after capsizing.

Such conditions mean that those who crew these boats have to trust that their boat is capable of withstanding the worst that nature and perhaps man can throw at them: trusted shipbuilders produce trusted vessels and Habbeké are therefore one of the wharves where the KRNM allow their boats to be built.