Bellingham Marine said it sent key personnel to Queensland, Australia, to help support local recovery and repair efforts at marinas affected by Cyclone Debbie.
The company said it sent staff to Airlie Beach and the Whitsunday Islands and has set up a “ready-to-repair” hot line (1800 655 539) for marinas needing assistance.
“We waited till the evacuation of tourists had been completed; then our team headed north,” Bellingham Marine’s John Spragg said in a statement. “Greg Dunne and Paul Sorrel, from Bellingham Marine, and Darren Wilkinson, from M-Tech, arrived on Hamilton Island in the Whitsunday Islands on Tuesday. The chaos and level of devastation is truly heartbreaking. We are here to assist any marina damaged in the cyclone and to get them up and running again as quickly as possible.”
Cyclone Debbie made landfall on March 28 near Airlie Beach, Queensland, a popular tourist area. Wind gusts of almost 162 mph and a 26-foot storm surge wreaked havoc on the region, causing widespread devastation.
Bellingham said intense winds and huge seas wrecked jetties, destroyed piers and left a line of shipwrecked yachts along the foreshore. Many marinas in the region sustained considerable damage. The company said several are nearly gone.
Bellingham said news sources report that insurers are using a triage system to prioritize policyholders’ claims to get assistance to those with the most urgent needs first.
“We understand the urgency of the situation and the need for these marinas to get back in business fast,” Spragg said.