Today, WKRG News 5 is reporting that 21% fewer tourists came to enjoy Alabama’s Gulf Coast beaches in 2010, spending more than $100 million less than in 2009. Gulf Coast beaches and businesses alike were hit hard by the negative publicity from the BP Gulf Oil Spill.
Even though the oil spill brought minimal actual damage to Alabama’s coastline, the damage to local events and businesses was very real. For example, says WKRG, attendance at Mobile’s famous Shrimp Fest was down 20% while Hank Aaron Stadium sold 9% fewer tickets. Even Battleship Memorial Park saw a drop of 37% in summertime attendance according to Executive Director Bill Turner.
It’s not just fishermen and oil rig workers whose livelihoods were threatened or taken away by the BP Deepwater Horizon Gulf Oil Spill. Our beautiful Gulf Coast communities depend on tourism for millions of jobs and billions of dollars in economic activity.
The oil spill and maritime accident attorneys of Long & Long stand in solidarity with the Mobile and the rest of our Gulf Coast neighbors. Here’s hoping 2011 brings better days, beaches full of tourists, and plenty of jobs to Alabama, Louisiana, and Florida!