ECOL welcomes first woman licence holder

Kelly Doruijter from the city of Spijkenisse in the Netherlands has become the first woman to hold an ECOL licence.

She joined Mammoet in April 2021 and worked as a rigger before starting crane operator training at the company’s academy in September.

Doruijter had previously served as a sergeant in the Dutch army and then worked as a bridge crane operator in the Port of Rotterdam.

Speaking to ESTA, she encouraged other women to consider becoming crane operators. ” If this profession appeals to you, even as a woman: go for it! I do think you need to be independent as a person and have a healthy dose of self-confidence. It also helps if you have a bit of verbal skill so that you can retort to colleagues if necessary.”

Asked what it is like working in an environment that is overwhelmingly male, she added: ” I was already used to working with 95% male colleagues from the port – in my experience, that’s not a problem if you stand up for your work and can also speak up if necessary.

“That means, not standing aside when something heavy needs to be picked up, not whining that you’re afraid you’ll break a nail, but just working with the men. That is appreciated. I have never been approached in an unfriendly way in all these years.”

Now qualified, she is looking forward to the opportunities ahead and has a definite preference for working with mobile tower cranes. “I prefer that mainly because of the fact that they are used on construction sites and less in industry. I like the variety of working at something different every day.”