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Charter operations shut down by Dorian

Marsh Harbour, Bahamas

Marsh Harbour, Bahamas

Two leading charter firms in the Abacos were severely impacted by Hurricane Dorian as it passed through the Bahamas earlier this week.

The full impact on MarineMax’s charter operations at Abaco Beach Resort and Boat Harbour Marina remains to be seen, according to the company.

“Like most of the territory, there is significant damage to buildings, infrastructure and people’s lives,” Dave Bigge, vice president of MarineMax Vacations, told Trade Only Today in an email. “We are currently receiving limited communications. Our vessels appear to have been lifted by storm surge and placed ashore. Until regular communications are restored, this is all we can report.”

A MarineMax spokesperson on Friday morning said the company is waiting for the “all clear” to begin shipping supplies to the operation.

The Moorings said that its base in Marsh Harbour in the Abacos was severely impacted. “From the aerial images we have seen released from the Coast Guard recently we have ascertained that the marina itself was completely destroyed,” Ian Pedersen, marketing manager, told Trade Only Today. “The fleet was relocated to other, more secure locations throughout the Bahamas, but it is too soon to speculate on the condition of the boats.”

Pedersen added that, “most importantly, we have 25 employees stationed in Marsh Harbour, and at this point we have only been able to contact/locate 11 of them. That is our main priority at this point is establishing the whereabouts and safety of our team.”

The company’s charter operation in Nassau was “unaffected” by the hurricane and remains open.

“The British Virgin Islands were hit by Dorian previously, but only as a Category 1 storm, and no damages were reported. They remain open and business-as-usual there,” Pedersen added.