The eye of Hurricane Irene passed over the Club at about 5pm GMT yesterday. Irene, a Category 3 hurricane, is one of the biggest storms to hit the Bahamas for many years. With constant wind speeds of 115mph, gusting to a reported 143mph, and with associated storm surges of up to 11 feet, Irene posed a very serious threat to property and life on low-lying Abaco.
We eagerly await news from the island. Initial reports from the Club (remarkably, there were still limited telephone links as the eye passed over) indicated that damage to the gardens and landscaping was extensive but the buildings appear to have largely held up – some external lights blown off, fences down etc but nothing too serious.
The beach steps were still standing at that point, but that would only have been half way through the ordeal and we doubt they will withstand the pummelling by what are still very angry seas. Waves were breaking on the cliff face fully 36 hours before the hurricane actually arrived.
Communications with the entire island have now been lost. We hope the “second half” was OK too and that the rest of the island has escaped so lightly.
More news as it emerges….
See also the Rolling Harbour blog site http://rollingharbour.wordpress.com for fuller details.