Photo: Flooding in Mexico
Mexico woke up Tuesday with almost the whole country on an emergency footing due to the torrential rains falling since last weekend as a result of a pair of tropical storms that left at least 45 people dead.
For the first time since 1958, Mexico’s Gulf and Pacific coasts were simultaneously slammed by tropical systems.
Though both Manuel, a Pacific storm, and Ingrid, the second hurricane of the 2013 Atlantic season, quickly lost strength after making landfall, their effects linger on.
Right now any highway in the country that is near the coast or reservoirs “can represent a possible emergency,” national emergency services chief Luis Felipe Puente told MVS radio.
Up to now there have been 34 fatalities from the storms.
The greatest worry is the great runoff of water from the land that is raising reservoir and river levels to an extent that could be a threat to populated areas, Puente said.
In the southern state of Guerrero, Acapulco’s international airport has been shut down by floods, while the Autopista del Sol motorway, which connects the famous resort with Mexico City, has been blocked by more than a score of landslides and a collapsed tunnel.
President Enrique Peña Nieto on Tuesday sent several of his Cabinet members to different states that have suffered considerable damage, while he himself went to Acapulco to observe the destruction at first hand.
Guerrero Gov. Angel Aguirre confirmed to Televisa that on Monday 152 people were rescued in his state.
Around 10:00 p.m. Monday “a very slow airlift” began carrying humanitarian aid from Mexico City to a military airfield in Acapulco, the governor said.