Florida’s marine industry assessing damage

MIAMI – Florida’s marine industry is once again preparing to clean up after it received the brunt of the fourth hurricane to hit the state this season.

While Hurricane Jeanne wasn’t as large or slow moving as some of the other hurricanes to hit this year, it was intense, with news reports estimating the damages to be between $4 billion and $9 billion.

This is due in part to the fact that many facilities hadn’t been fully repaired from previous storms and thus were more vulnerable to further damage. Jeanne made landfall less than a dozen miles from where Frances came ashore, following a similar path, but also crossing Charley’s path in the process.

In Fort Piece, the 200-slip city marina that was devastated by Hurricane Frances was damaged once again when Jeanne came ashore, news agencies reported. In some cases, boats that survived Frances were sunk by Jeanne.

Hurricanes to cause unemployment?

For some marina workers, hurricane damage could mean unemployment with few other local options within the marine industry.

Such may be the case at the Everglades Adventure Marina, on Lake Okeechobee, according to an article today in the Sun-Sentinel.

Docks were hit hard by Jeanne, with 20 boats considered “severely damaged,” in addition to the mobile home that served as an office, according to the newspaper.

It reported that the marina would only be able to employ maintenance and clean-up staff for the next several weeks. Twelve workers, including boat housekeepers, clerical staff and line handlers, are expected to be laid off.

The nearest marina is eight miles away and was also severely damaged by hurricanes, the newspaper reported, leaving marina employees with few industry options.

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