By RICHARD RODRIGUEZ, Associated Press Marine Life Insurance Corp. says it is donating $20 of its $40 million annual sales revenue to help the families of stranded tourists on the Great Barrier Reef.
The insurance company said in a statement Wednesday that it has a total of more than 9,000 customers, including those who have been stranded by Tropical Storm Ophelia, and expects to be on the scene of nearly 1,500 of those customers when it opens its doors Friday.
Ophelia has brought a new urgency to the plight of stranded people, many of whom have been on the reef for weeks without adequate water supplies or shelter.
The death toll from Tropical Storms Harvey, Irma and Maria, which hit the US coast in August, is expected to rise, but Ophelieas death toll has been in the single digits.
Ophenia caused widespread damage to coral reefs and marine life.
It killed three tourists on August 8 in the Bahamas and one man on August 11 in the US Virgin Islands.
A total of 6,000 people have died in the tropical cyclone and storm’s aftermath.
It has killed at least 5.5 million people.
Opherea hit land in the southeastern United States last Thursday, and has since moved inland.
Ophelian rains have been bringing fresh rain, causing flooding and damaging roads.