USS Mount Whitney is one of two Blue Ridge-class amphibious command ships of the United States Navy and is the flagship and command ship of the United States Sixth Fleet. USS Mount Whitney also serves as the Afloat Command Platform of Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO. She is one of only a few commissioned ships to be assigned to Military Sealift Command.

Mount Whitney is the most sophisticated Command, Control, Communications, Computer, and Intelligence (C4I) ship ever commissioned. She incorporates various elements of the most advanced C4I equipment and gives the embarked Joint Task Force Commander the capability to effectively command all units under their command.

Mount Whitney can transmit and receive large amounts of secure data to and from any point on earth through HF, UHF, VHF, and SHF (satellite) communications channels. This electronic technology enables the Joint Intelligence Center and Joint Operations Center to provide the most timely intelligence and operational support available in the Navy.

EWS Italy will take care of the Daily COVID-19 Prevention and Control Service on board, for the next 4 months, in the Port of Genoa.

Increased gas value in containers during summer

More sun hours, rising temperature and an higher percentage of rejected import containers. Every year EWS Group sees the rising percentage of containers with an excessively high gas value when the summer period begins. What is the exact reason behind the rising temperature vs. rejected containers? Will there be more gas added to containers? And what exactly does heat do?

Evaporation process
The answer to the question – “will there be more gas added to containers during this period?” – is no. About 90% of the rejected containers contain gases that arise from the evaporation process from the goods inside. After production, the goods are quickly placed in the container where the evaporation process continues. When the containers are in a cold environment and / or in an environment where there is less of sunlight, the temperature in the container would be lower. In the other way around, the container gets much warmer inside. Think about getting into a car that has been in the sun for several hours.

The result of more sun hours
What is the impact of heat in containers? When the temperature in containers will rise, the goods will evaporate more, which logically results in a higher gas value in containers. Below you’ll see a selection from our database to show the impact of more sun hours and warm temperatures.

Using this information to your advantage
So, now you know the gas value will increase when the temperature rises. Due to this reason, EWS uses Inland Terminals and the Drive-Through locations to perform gas measurements. Throughout the Netherlands EWS has collaborations with Inland Terminals and by having the gas measurements take place at one of these locations, the container can be directly connected to a ventilation system if the gas value is too high. This will prevent a unnecessary trip for your carriers because the container still appears to contain too high gas value on arrival. And don’t forget, you don’t have  to cancel the unloading team as well.

Ventilation without the desired result
However, ventilation can sometimes take longer than expected during this period. After disconnecting the ventilation, goods will evaporate in such a way that the gas value in the container increases again. There is also a solution for this case: EWS offers the possibility to unload the container at the customer’s location or an EWS location where we will use all necessary personal protective equipment. The container is a closed space with less air circulation. When the goods are unloaded safely with a mixture of “fresh” air, a high gas value is no longer measured. This means that the goods can still be delivered to the customer on time and the container can be returned to the terminal on time.

If you have any questions or problems regarding your measurements and ventilation, do not hesitate to contact us. We are pleased to assist you in your logistics process to offer the best solutions.

EWS Group – Our solutions, your sustainability

Disinfection in restaurant Kamiano for homeless people

Kamiano in Antwerp is a restaurant of Sant’Egidio who look after homeless people. Those in need can get a meal for free. Pascale Bemelmans is one of the co-founders of this organization in Antwerp. “Disinfection treatment by EWS was very welcome and is a wonderful gesture.”

Pascale learned more about the Sant’Egidio organization in Rome while she was on holiday. She started the restaurant in Antwerp in 1994 together with some other people. Sant’ Egidio has grown into a large organization with  thousand volunteers in Belgium. “It’s all about more empathy in this society without judging,” said Pascale. The organization’s message is that poverty can happen to anyone. Kamiano’s approach is very personal. People will be helped by a warm welcome with great respect and in a family atmosphere. Did you know that 250 people come to the restaurant for a warm meal each week? We reach more than thousand people in distress.  In winter, soups and other hot meals are brought to various groups of homeless people by cargo bike. “The hot meal is an answer to a first and immediate need. But for those who want, there is also guidance in many other areas, ”explains Pascale.

Kamiano’s team consists of several professional counselors, including psychologists and social workers. They have numerous of serveral volunteers to. “Kamiano is co-financed by the city of Antwerp, but also relies on donations and volunteers. That’s why it was a nice gesture that EWS Group wanted to help us disinfect our restaurant and guidance center ”, says Pascale gratefully. “It was impressive to experience the disinfection treatment!”. According to EWS, this location was already very clean, because Kamiano has monitored this very closely because of the Corona measures. “Hygiene is very important to us, especially for these vulnerable people. We are very happy that we were able to disinfect the spaces professionally, because the mist reaches places that are difficult for us to reach and is also able to kill bacteria, “says Pascale. So you help us help!”


By opening another fumigation area with partner BCTN Terminals, EWS Group strengthens its leading position in Woodlog fumigation. As of today BCTN Venray will join the strategic locations at which EWS offers Woodlog Fumigation to its customers. Venray is located in southern in The Netherlands and is close to the Belgium and German border area. Fumigation teamleader Roy van Hattum and BCTN Terminal Manager Antal Rozijn welcomed the first containers to this new location. BCTN Venray is a fast growing terminal situated right next to the river Maas. It is expected that Fumigation capacity will develop accordingly.

Learn more about Woodlock Fumigation by clicking here.

Lockdown and development of bedbugs in hotel rooms

Bedbugs are a type of insect that feed on human blood, usually at night.  Their bites can result in several health impacts, including skin rushes and allergic symptoms. At room temperature de eggs of the bedbug hatch after 15 to 22 days and they only need one and a half month to reach adulthood. Bedbugs can live without food for up to six months. However, watch out!  After the lockdown they are extra active.

In March, many countries in Europe and UK adopted extra measures to prevent the further spread of coronavirus. As a preventative method, governments restricted air traffic and discouraged trips abroad. Because of these measures the occupation of hotel rooms drastically decreased.  Many hotel owners have closed their buildings and haven’t had guests for weeks. As long as the temperature in a hotel rooms fluctuates between 15-18°C, bedbugs can survive for up to 6 months without food.

When bedbugs get hungry, they can travel relatively long distances hunting for new hosts. After the lockdown gets lifted the hotels will reopen. This means that at night the bedbugs in hotel rooms will be hungry for blood.  During the night bedbugs will be present in large numbers, ready to prey on the hotel guests, with all the unpleasant consequences for the guests and the hotels.

In order to prevent this inconvenience, it is wise to thoroughly inspect (suspicious) rooms, before commissioning. This can be done by well-trained hotel staff, or by a specialised team of EWS Pestcontrol. The infested rooms can be proactively treated with a professional control plan, which saves future guests from this unpleasant experience and disturbance.

Proud despite hard times!

Only 6 weeks ago – which feels like an eternity – it became clear what was in store for us regarding measures in case of Coronavirus.  The first notifications came from our Italian colleagues about quarantines, possible lockdown, hundreds of infected, and the first people who died from this virus. Then it escalated quickly. We also had to prepare ourselves, which risks and impact this pandemic would have for our companies in the other European countries, where we operate. We involved our customers to know their vision for the coming months. Also new forecasts have been made and we did some research into reducing work time. Various scenarios passed. Precautions have been taken; cars from the operational staff have all been supplied with soap and water, extra cleaning has been scheduled, all the office personnel were asked to work from home. We try to follow one clear policy as hard as we can. Of course, with specific exceptions in each Country.



The fact is that this situation is showing how strong our organisation is: there is more cooperation than ever on all fronts, we have daily team meetings, where we keep each other informed about developments by video conference.  HR, QHSE, Sales and Operations have never worked that close and intensively before. Everyone has a lot of creativity and is motivated to answer to all our customers issues. The most important thing is we remain self-motivated.

This situation reminds me of a Dutch quote: “alone you go faster, together you come further.” This sentence certainly applies to us. We really do this together!

We have divisions that are struggling, so we are blessed that we also work in branches that continue to run their business. Logistic never stands still, pests cannot be held back by coronavirus and the demand for our services has never been higher in the food industry. New services, such as disinfection, have been developed and time has been dedicated to knowledge transfer. Multidisciplinary training of our colleagues has always been a high priority on our agenda, but due to constant growth and tight labour markets, this has been difficult to achieve. Nowadays, colleagues between the different divisions are exchanged more than ever before.

It’s often said in the news: there is a world before coronavirus and a world after it, and it will never be like before. I must tell you honestly that I hope so, because this extraordinary situation brought significant changes. I am proud, extremely proud of our colleagues, our partners (customers and suppliers). We all stand together, with patience and understanding. This is inspiring and give us the drive to go for it every day.

Take care, enjoy the little things and try to stay healthy!

Joren Nieuwenhuizen


Article as PDF: Proud despite hard times!


COVID-19 – well known as the Coronavirus – opens the eyes of the entire world regarding to hygiene, cleaning and disinfection. Frouke Kieboom, who works at a medical practice in Geertruidenberg The Netherlands, takes her responsibility: “Supporting and take care of each other is very important to prevent contamination. A disinfection of EWS Group based on hydrogen peroxide is very welcome at the practice. ”

Desinfectie Corona
Professional Disinfection Corona room

Frouke Kieboom is a medical practice assistant at Medical Care practice Jacobs, Lammers and Smit in Geertruidenberg in The Netherlands. She is also registered as a BIG and has worked as a district nurse. Her experience is very welcome in this dynamic time of the Corona crisis. Doctors and nurses currently recognize high pressure in their work environment. They do everything they can to prevent infections so that they can still treat as many patients as possible. A doctor is even exempted from treating (possible) corona patients. The most important measure will be a disinfection treatment by EWS Group in one treatment room, killing up to 99.9% bacteria and viruses.

Only patients (possible) infected with Corona and designated doctors may enter the disinfected room. “Thanks to EWS Group we have a special COVID-19 room,” says Kieboom. Working in this environment feels much safer ”. In addition, professional disinfection based on hydrogen peroxide is more reliable than normal disinfection, because the disinfection of EWS Group can reach all possible angles and kills an unimaginably high percentage of all micro-organisms. “That gives a sense of security,” says Kieboom. That is why we can treat these (potentially) infected patients in this room so we don’t have to take any risks for other patients.

EWS Group is a renowned company and market leader in controlling air concentrations in closed spaces, fumigation and pest control. Ragarding to the knowledge and skills of various divisions, EWS Group has developed an innovative product for disinfecting spaces based on hydrogen peroxide. The proven treatment kills bacteria and fights viruses. More information here.


Article: Toxic gases in boxes from China: ‘Leave your order for another day…’

This article was placed in the Algemeen Dagblad (NL) and is translated from Dutch. You can find the original article over here.

Toxic gases in boxes from China: ‘Leave your order for another day…’

Dutch consumers and port employees are unnecessarily exposed to toxic gases due to Chinese and Asian products that are loaded into a container too quickly after producing them. Gas measurement companies in the port of Rotterdam are warning for this. Products are concerning, among others, shoes, electronics, white goods and various plastic trinkets.

Of every ten containers that reach the ports of Rotterdam and Amsterdam, at least one contains too high concentrations of toxic gases, according to Gasmeetstation and EWS Group, the biggest companies in gas measurement and ventilation of ship loads. Yearly, hundreds of thousands of ‘wrong’ containers are concerned: in the first half of this year, 7,5 million containers arrived in the port of Rotterdam alone.

Reason for the warning is the drama concerning the inland navigation couple De Waardt, that landed on the intensive care of the UMC, because of a load treated with Phosphine (rat poison).

According to reputable gas measurement companies, it goes wrong more often. On one hand, there are containers with, for example, grain, corn and rice that are consciously treated with gas in order to kill pests. The biggest category, however are products that vaporize toxic gases themselves. „Those are the real silent killers”, says Joren Nieuwenhuizen, director/owner of EWS Group and Chairman of Stichting Kennis en Advies Gasmeting en Ontgassing (KAGO). Shoes, but also white goods, electronics and all kinds of trinkets of plastic, pvc, wood and synthetics like Christmas houses and packaging materials.

Half of shoes gets rejected

At Gasmeetstation, employees measure too many dangerous gases in 12 percent of the containers. In the fifth percent of the cases, it concerns gases against pests, like Phosphine. The biggest part (80 percent) concerns toxic vapours from goods that were produced too fast.

Competitor EWS Group – which is also active in Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Spain – finds dangerous concentrations of gases in 11 percent of the hundreds of thousands of containers they check every year. However, that is the average „We reject almost half of the loads with shoes”, tells Director Nieuwenhuizen. „Shoes are coming from Asia, where they are glued together with cheap products like formalin and toluene.” Shoes are transported before the glue has dried, during transport they also encounter the warm tropics. „This leads to a big gas bubble, that often exists of a mixture of different gases.”

Those shoes end up in warehouses and eventually in shoe stores. „That nice scent of new shoes, actually is the evaporation of volatile organic substances with potentially dangerous health effects”, Nieuwenhuizen says. His own children preferably only get shoes that where produced in Europe.

Mandatory ventilation phase

Health damage is revealed at the long term, Leo Roderkerk of Gasmeetstation complements. „Toxic, carcinogenic substances build up in the body. Nobody knows how many people eventually get sick. And if you get sick, try to prove that it’s because of the toxic container gases.”

Chemist Dr. Atie Verschoor, expert in container gases, pleads for a mandatory ventilation phase between production and transport. „Buyers in The Netherlands should oblige Chinese producers to do so. But the extra cent that those products will cost, apparently is too much.”

Verschoor, who has been director for years of the expertise centre in container gases ECEmed that was connected to the Rijstate hospital in Arnhem, states that Dutch consumers should be informed much better about the dangers of imported goods. „Don’t take a new pc or tv out of the box in the living room immediately. Put them somewhere they can ventilate for 24 hours first.”

According to all experts, the attention for toxic containers has weakened in the last years and they are inspected not often enough. A decade back, it has been different for a while, also due to reports of Zembla and Argos. Platform Gassen in Containers (PGIC), as well as a special contact point were formed. In the House of Representatives, Remi Poppe (SP) and Jan Boelhouwer (PvdA) advocated for a special inspection team.

More attention for safe production

According to the Inspectie Leefomgeving & Transport (IL&T), the situation has improved structurally. „Now, there are many more ventilation units and more awareness that containers can be dangerous,” a spokesperson states.

Director Nieuwenhuizen of EWS Group would like to see more attention for safe production. „In Europe, we banned many detrimental chemicals, and now these chemicals enter our country through Asia because we love to buy cheap stuff.”

Nieuwenhuizen repeatedly invited the government to share his expertise. „We have been building a database with more than one million containers since 2010. Not even 2 percent of the total amount of containers that enter The Netherlands are checked nowadays.”

Response Customs: 16.625 containers were checked in 2018

In a response, customs let us know that every container that is inspected, also must be opened and checked for the presence of dangerous gases. The Douane Rotterdam Haven (DRH) says that 16.625 containers were checked last year „in different processes”. Of these, 77 were reported to the Inspection SZW, because they contained too high concentrations of gases or vapours. This year, it is expected that the total of physically inspected containers will be a little higher, according to DRH. Up until last week, 90 incoming and 15 outgoing containers were reported to the Inspection SZW, because they contained gases or vapours that exceeded the statutory limits.

EWS Pest control receives the IPM & KPMB certificates again

After a successful audit, EWS Pest control has received the IPM (Integrated Pest Management) and KPMB (Keurmerk Plaagdier Management Bedrijven) certificates again this year. The KPMB certificate shows that EWS is a specialized organisation of high quality. EWS Group also meets the requirements of ‘Rat control around buildings and food storage areas’.