Night shift Hoechst Vlissingen, 1983.

Back then it was strictly forbidden to take pictures … (it was the time when it was not even allowed to use a transistor radio in the control room) … so I took pictures illegally, to capture the atmosphere in the control room where colleagues also came for a cup of coffee and a short rest from the heavy physical work in the phosphorus factory.

Apparently Michel Eggers is concentrating on starting up oven 3 after a maintenance shutdown.

Furthermore, Theo Bubberman, Ton Witte, Jan van Ochten, Bas Raas, Ewout Sichterman, Wim Harwig and Willem Tissink are clearly recognizable in the photos (and for the acquaintances also Seger Leclerc).

The pneumatic vane / nozzle controls built into the wall of the control room today would be called hopelessly outdated and unreliable. But I thought they were just fine, because you could clearly hear the whistle or hiss when a controller suddenly moved out of its normal control range.

The night shift also did the simple chores for which there was no time during the day. In the eighties it was the maintenance and updating of all registration equipment, which mainly consisted of analog printers whose ink had to be refilled and which had to be date stamped.

And of course the control room was cleaned!

The pictures only show the work in the control room … in the rest of the factory about 20 more operators are at work!

Published by wim harwig

too old to die young, but still making love and not war

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