About Rotterdam-Rijnmond

We significantly contribute to the safety in this heavily trafficked area full of terminals, refineries and chemical plants.

About us

The port of Rotterdam is the largest in Europe. Using 220 independent, professional pilots, Nederlands Loods­wezen each year helps almost 56,000 vessels to smoothly and safely enter and leave the ports. We signi­ficantly contribute to the safety in this heavily trafficked area full of terminals, refineries and chemical plants. We do this in all weather conditions, 24 hours a day and seven days a week. From Europoort to Moerdijk.

Due to the very diverse range of vessels – from small to ultra large - which call at Rotterdam’s ports, the pilots receive highly intensive, continuous training. In addition, each pilot has his own specialisation for a certain area in  the river Maas estuary , such as the Europoort (including Eurogeul), the Botlek area, the city ports or the area up to and including Dordrecht and Moerdijk.


To provide the maritime industry with the best possible service, registered pilots are available in all circumstan­ces. Consequently, we offer a significant contribution to the success of the port of Rotterdam, the beating heart of the Dutch economy.

Depending on the vessel type and size and the weather conditions, we transport the pilots by jet-propelled tenders or by helicopter. In ad­verse weather conditions, smaller vessels can be piloted from shore (Loodsen Op Afstand or Shore-based Pilo­tage) by a specially trained pilot. This means that the pilot carries out his task from a radar station. As soon as the ship is located within the piers, the assigned pilot physi­cally boards the vessel. A similar procedure is in place for outgoing vessels. The largest sea-going ships are then piloted by helicopter. With this, we see to it that the port is and always remains optimally accessible even in extreme weather conditions.


The waterways around Rotterdam are the most dynamic in the world. Everything to do with shipping is constantly in motion. High service levels are guaranteed through the close cooperation with other service providers in the port, such as tug companies, boatmen and port authorities. For the Rotterdam-Rijnmond region, quality is essential.


ISPO (International Standard for Pilot Organisations) is an integrated Safety Management System for regis­tered pilots and the accompanying organisation. In this system, procedures are clearly defined and monitored. The Rotterdam-Rijnmond region is the first ISPO-certified organisation in the world.