The hurricane that struck The British Virgin Islands in September 2017 caused extensive damage to this region. Known as Irma, it was one of the strongest among hurricanes recorded till date that have happened in the Atlantic region. It came at wind speeds of about 185 mph. About five people were killed in BVI while 39 others lost lives spread across the Caribbean. Hurricane Maria then came and it devastated the US Virgin Islands, Dominica, and Puerto Rico.
Judy Petz is one of the directors for organizing regattas in this region, being a native of the British Virgin Islands. She remembers how devastating it had been, with all the residents being cut off from water and power supplies. She herself was in the US at the time when the hurricane hit and she was cut off from trying to communicate with her husband and other family members. Even though that phase is over, the region is still trying to rebuild itself. At such a time hosting the sailing week of BVI spring-time might seem frivolous but it also has some benefits to offer.