Hamilton’s Island Hell – Crisis Management Crisis

Hamilton Island Airport chaos 30.3.17. Pic: Corinne Walding.
Hamilton Island Airport chaos 30.3.17. Pic: Corinne Walding.

Hamilton’s Island’s crisis management credentials and potentially its reputation risk being shredded by Cyclone Debbie, which ripped through the Whitsunday’s earlier this week.

The island is in chaos with guests complaining of no power, food, water or communication.

One said: “It looks like a war zone”.  A headline in today’s Townsville Bulletin screamed, ”Guests Trapped in Island Hell“.

No media statements have been issued while a trawl of coverage failed to find a single comment from island management.

As a result Hamilton Island has lost control of the conversation and disgruntled customers are now in charge of media agenda.

Twitter has been used sparingly, while Hamiltonisland.com.au still boasts blue skies above an out-of-date statement regarding flights out.

Facebook is the main medium.

Hamilton Island’s res consultants are doing their best, responding promptly to every query – many of which concern forward bookings.

But they complain “there’s a lot of disinformation out there” saying that a full assessment of the island and its ability to cater for future guests will be completed by April 2.

While that’s understandable, it is difficult to comprehend so little attention has been paid to basic communication with hundreds if not thousands of guests still stranded and the situation uncertain.

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