A salvage company
With the merits of gold refining, the new idea was born quickly. Roel bought an old naval ship that he converted into a full-size salvage ship, equipped with the most modern computers, sonars, radars, gyrocompasses, a crane, winches, in short, everything that was conceivable was in it. With a good story, a beautiful ship, a good crew and, above all, a lot of courage, Roel saved many ships in need in the 80s, often at night and at ontij. From pleasure yachts to fishing boats: if you were a mountaineer quickly, the earnings were excellent! At the peak of their recovery activities, Roel and Katinka married and celebrated their wedding in style on one of the few uninhabited islands in our country: the Razende Bol, a sandbar between Texel and Den Helder.
The wreck register Wraksys
In the meantime Roel had also discovered computers, and he got the ban of another new idea in which he could combine his passion for electronics and his salvage activities. Together with a Delft engineering company and a group of enthusiastic hobbyists, he developed the largest database ever about shipwrecks in Dutch coastal waters. The database contained more than 100,000 locations of shipwrecks and aircraft wrecks, and unlocked all kinds of information that had been hidden up to now. This is how Roel discovered several hidden locations of shipwrecks that had just sunk after the Second World War – filled with poison gas – for the Danish and Dutch coasts. The navy, the coastguard and various other companies and institutions make use of this unique database, which is currently managed by the Wraksys Foundation.