Hurricane Hole Update from Virgin Islands National Park Service

Some 50 boats that were damaged by Hurricane Irma still ring Hurricane Hole, but the Navy is on the way to remove the wrecks. (National Park Service photo)
Some 50 boats that were damaged by Hurricane Irma still ring Hurricane Hole, but the Navy is on the way to remove the wrecks. (National Park Service photo)

The impacts of hurricanes Irma and Maria, together with some damage from the recent vessel removal operation, have rendered portions of the chain unusable. Berths at Otter 12, Otter 13, and Borck 4 are not usable because of chain damage, according to a press release issued on Wednesday by the Virgin Islands National Park Service (NPS).

Neither vessels nor any hardware should be attached to the chain in this vicinity. If any vessel is located at one of these berths, please contact Esther Francis, who will identify a substitute berth. She may be reached at 776-6201, ext. 239 or [email protected].

Additionally, some berths may be difficult to use because of remaining debris (e.g., boat remnants, tree trunks). If upon examination you believe your assigned berth is not usable, contact Esther Francis for a substitute berth.

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At this time, we are not marking berths as is typically done. Though this will likely make locating a berth more difficult, GPS coordinates of the berths are available on the NPS web page below.

The Hurricane Hole Storm Refuge Users Guide, Maps of the bays, and GPS coordinates of the berths are available at https://www.nps.gov/vicr/learn/management/hurricane-hole-storm-refuge.htm.

Until the chain can be repaired and the entire system is inspected, NPS is uncertain of its condition and ability to withstand additional storms. As always, use this storm mooring system at one’s own risk and reference the User’s Guide.

The 2018 permit should be e-mailed to people shortly.

NPS is enlisting the services of a contractor to examine and repair the chain system.

Questions or comments may be emailed to [email protected].

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