Cancun Hurricane: Lisa with winds of 140 km per hour

Lisa, a 140-kilometer-per-hour hurricane. The southern part of Quintana Roo remains under a yellow warning.

Cancun Hurricane: Lisa with winds of 140 km per hour
140-kph Hurricane Lisa. Quintana Roo's south remains on yellow alert. Image by David Mark from Pixabay

The yellow alert (moderate danger) is maintained for the municipalities of Bacalar and Othón P. Blanco; the green alert is for José María Morelos, as well as blue alert (minimum danger) for the municipalities of Tulum, Solidaridad, Puerto Morelos, Benito Juárez, Isla Mujeres, Lázaro Cárdenas and Cozumel.

As of noon this Thursday, work will resume in government agencies, in addition to calling on people to stay in their homes if they have nothing urgent to go out; in addition to not falling into rumors and panic buying, attending only the official reports issued by the government of Quintana Roo.

The most recent report placed the center of Hurricane Lisa at 120 kilometers, south of Chetumal, and 10 kilometers from Belize City, with sustained winds of 140 kilometers per hour (kph) and gusts of 165 kph.

Hurricane Lisa will continue its path this Thursday through Guatemala until it degrades to a tropical depression when it reaches the Gulf of Mexico. Rainfall forecasts for Thursday are expected to be punctual to heavy, with a rainfall of between 50 to 75 millimeters of rain, as well as swells of two to four meters.

They have already deployed the DN3 Plan, in its prevention phase through tours in urban and rural areas to detect possible risk points, in addition to having prepared a community kitchen and a crisis office to monitor the phenomenon.

The Navy reported the closure of ports to navigation in Xcalak, Mahahual, and Chetumal, and the sargassum boats and containment barriers have been secured to avoid damage to the equipment used to combat sargassum.

Prevention during hurricane season in Cancun

Given the current hurricane season and to reinforce the culture of prevention, the Municipality of Benito Juarez, where Cancun is located, through the General Directorate of Civil Protection, invites everyone to know the differences between the five alert levels to take the necessary precautions, according to a press release.

According to information from specialists, hydrometeorological phenomena increase their frequency between June and November and are measured according to the Saffir-Simpson scale, which defines and classifies them according to the speed of the winds they present.

In category 1 the phenomena of this type register winds of 119 kilometers per hour or more and cause damage to trees, billboards, and mobile homes, as well as flooding in small areas; for category 2, the winds reach 153 kilometers per hour, so their affectation is greater in advertisements and trees, as well as partially destroying roofs, doors, and windows, besides leaving highways and coastal roads flooded.

When category 3 reaches 177 kilometers per hour, signs are knocked down and roofs, doors, and windows of buildings are affected, as well as destroyed mobile homes and major flooding of coastal areas; while in category 4, which increases to 208 kilometers per hour, the accumulation of water on roads reaches 10 kilometers and there may be serious damage to the structure of houses such as roofs and some walls, as well as uprooted trees and billboards.

Finally, category 5 is considered the most powerful, with 251 kilometers per hour or more, so the authorities must make an immediate mass evacuation, as it is estimated that it will leave in its path collapsed homes and buildings and even destroyed cars, extreme flooding of more than three meters high and uprooted vegetation.

Cancun hoteliers ready with their shelters to face hurricane season

The hotel sector is fine-tuning the last details with the municipal authorities for the integration of the shelters that will receive tourists in case of a hurricane, which already numbers more than 90, said Jesús Almaguer Salazar, president of the Hotel Association of Cancún, Puerto Morelos and Isla Mujeres.

"We have a meeting this week to finalize the issue of shelters, since April we went ahead to verify that the shelters are in condition and assigned, in that sense we have advanced a lot, there are 126 hotels of which so far we have more than 90 with shelters secured and we are going to close the issue with the authorities," he explained.

The most important thing is to verify that the shelter can accommodate the estimated number of guests during the different months of the hurricane season, as well as the possibility of providing them with basic services.

With the pandemic, many schools that function as shelters have been abandoned, which is why since April the association began to work on the issue, in addition to having maintenance personnel that could address the conditions of abandonment and so far they have no report that something is missing.

For this reason, the lodging centers make agreements with schools or any other place that functions as a shelter, to have this link and verify that they are inadequate conditions to receive all the tourists that could use them in case of a hurricane.