Abandoned Sailboat Washes Ashore at Norton Point
Mark Alan Lovewell
Salvage plans are under way for an abandoned 36-and-a-half-foot sailboat that washed up at Norton Point beach on Friday night. No one was aboard the Running Free, which was abandoned in the Bermuda Triangle on Mother’s Day.
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Winter Storms Blow in Higher Rates for Fair Plan Home Insurance
Sara Brown
A steep rate hike is in the offing for the only home insurance available to many Vineyard residents.

The FAIR Plan has proposed a rate increase of nearly 10 per cent for the Cape and Islands.

According to information released by the Massachusetts Property Insurance Underwriting Association, also known as the FAIR Plan, owner-occupied home insurance rates would increase 9.9 per cent, the maximum increase allowed, on the Cape and Islands. The proposed average increase in the state is seven per cent.

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Frequent Storms Undermine East Chop Roadway
Sara Brown
The succession of storms that have pounded the Island this winter have taken their toll in Oak Bluffs, where the town says massive repairs are needed to stabilize the damaged East Chop area.

Officials said the already-weakened East Chop Drive, bluff and beach have sustained significant damage in the past few months, beginning with Hurricane Sandy in October and continuing through a nearly-three-day storm last week.

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Island Tallies Monetary Impact of Storms
Remy Tumin

As the northeast continues to recover from Hurricane Sandy’s historic destruction two weeks ago, federal and state disaster relief officials visited the Vineyard on Thursday to assess damages and help begin the reimbursement process for damages to town property sustained during the storm.

Initial estimates to town and county owned coastlines and property Island-wide swelled to over $14.2 million.

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Boaters Safe, Surfers Swell After Storm
Mark Alan Lovewell

By MARK ALAN LOVEWELL

Tropical storm Hanna kicked up seas, brought wind and rain, but had a lot less punch than anticipated. Harbor masters and shipyard owners were relieved following several days of preparations. By the time the storm arrived Saturday, the forecasted heavy rains and high winds were somewhere else.

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Land Ho! Island Forms in Wake of Storms
Mark Alan Lovewell

First there was one opening and now there are two at Norton Point Beach.

The second, closer to the Chappaquiddick side, occurred on the weekend of March 8 and 9 during the height of a windy storm.

Between the two openings, there is a 150-yard little island. It already has the name Charlie’s Island.

“You’ve heard of Gilligan’s Island. This is Charlie’s Island,” said Chris Kennedy of The Trustees of Reservations.

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A.G. Faults Hurricane Models for Inflating Homeowner Insurance Rates
Mark Alan Lovewell

Vineyard property owners concerned about sky-high insurance premiums now have company; the Massachusetts Attorney General mounted a claim last month that faulty computer-generated hurricane models have contributed to unnecessarily high home insurance rates for property owners across the commonwealth.

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