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Emergency hurricane shelter verifications starting early this year

Riviera Maya, Q.R. — State officials are preparing to begin building tours for the upcoming hurricane season. The seasonal tour and selection process prepares the buildings for potential emergency shelter use during hurricane season.

First up on the list this year is the municipality of Othón P. Blanco. During the upcoming week, officials will begin visiting schools, which like most buildings, are constructed from concrete, for emergency shelter selection.

José Rafael Lara Díaz, the General Director of the Educational Physical Infrastructure Institute of the State of Quintana Roo (Ifeqroo), reported that 138 buildings will be inspected in the municipality of Othón P. Blanco for emergency shelter use.

He says of the 138 buildings, 114 are in rural areas and 24 in urban areas, most of which are located in the state’s capital city of Chetumal. The verification tours will also include officials from State Civil Protection.

Lara Díaz explained that Ifeqroo is part of the collegiate group that makes up the Municipal Civil Protection Committee responsible for emergency situations such as hurricanes.

The tours will also involve officials from the Secretariat of the Navy (Semar), Secretariat of National Defense (Sedena), Secretariat of Education of Quintana Roo (SEQ), the State Coordination of Civil Protection (Coeproc) and the management of the Othón P. Blanco City Council, whose staff will assess the needs of the shelters to ensure they are equipped.

State officials will begin touring buildings this week.

“A very intense hydrometeorological season is expected for the entire country due to the phenomenon known as El Niño,” he reported.

Lara Díaz said that due to early forecasts, state officials decided to start the process a little earlier than normal. The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June to November each year.