Oct 16, 2017
We only have a few press releases in the file that talk about the marine industry’s very supportive response to the recent hurricane damage – there were far more that we never even heard of.
I’m certainly proud of the effort the marine industry made with many companies donating boats, engines and even doing direct salvage work. For example, even now a month after Hurricane Irma struck Florida, the BoatUS Catastrophe (“CAT”) Field Team is still hard at work.
The photo sequence here from Marathon’s Boot Key Harbor, shows salvage crews from TowBoatUS Marathon raise a sunken sailboat and get a navigation hazard off the harbor bottom. Since the CAT Team’s arrival in Florida the day after the storm struck, hundreds of recreational vessels have been recovered.
For a look at Hurricane Irma’s damage, go to their Facebook page: https://goo.gl/5oJVpC.
Canadian Yachting magazine regularly carries several pages of advertising from Caribbean yacht charter companies. Almost all of those businesses have had to cancel their bookings because of the extensive losses in both their onshore infrastructure as well as their charter fleets.
Still, the industry is doing their best to help. The Newport International Boat Show, announced has committed $15,000 to various organizations helping to assist those in the Caribbean islands affected by Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
One of the hardest hit areas is St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. Sadly, organizers of the Carlos Aguilar Match Race (CAMR) scheduled for November 30-December 3, 2017 have had to announce the cancellation of the event. The CAMR, presented by the U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism, is known for bringing some of the best international match racing talent, from America’s Cup veterans to Olympians, to sail in the scenic yet challenging Charlotte Amalie Harbor.
We learned that following the double blow dealt by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, the International Yachting Community have shown their willingness to mobilize a massive relief effort to distribute essential services and goods to Barbuda and Dominica.
The humanitarian organization Sea Mercy has teamed up with the Antigua Charter Yacht Meeting (ACYM) to enact a first response and long term rebuilding plan.
While that is great news for some of the popular Caribbean islands, it feels like Hurricane Harvey that devastated parts of Texas are now almost forgotten. Yet, we should remember that Mercury Marine donated multiple boats and engines to the affected areas. Mercury deployed 30 six horsepower outboard engines as well as 10 inflatable boats, a 40 horse outboard and through their Land ‘N’ Sea division, Mercury rushed 100 lifejackets to Houston from its Louisiana warehouse.
This just names a few of the many and diverse marine businesses, boating groups and of course, individuals who donated to help.
Our thanks and appreciation to all who stepped up!