Hurricane Irma Hits UGAMI

Hurricane Irma hit UGAMI pretty hard.  About ¾ of our buildings had some storm surge flooding, including research & teaching labs; the BIRL dormitory; The Powerhouse (lecture hall/dining hall/kitchen); administrative offices; electrical, auto & carpentry shops; houses; and storage facilities. The main lab and nearby buildings suffered the worst damage, with over a foot of water inside. Electrical power to Sapelo Island was out for a week.

The good news is that none of our vehicles, vessels, or vital instruments were damaged.  The UGAMI campus is a mess but the contractors are already well into the cleanup/restoration process, so we should be back operating at 100% capacity by Thanksgiving.  We’re also trying to use this as an opportunity to improve some facilities and make them less prone to flood damage in the future.  It’s a setback, but it’s temporary, and we’ll come out of it stronger in the end.

The scene outside the BIRL dormitory at the peak of the storm surge.

See more images of Hurricane Irma’s effects on UGAMI and Sapelo Island in our Photo Gallery.