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Hurricane Otis death toll rises to 45 also claiming American, Brit and Canadian lives

Acapulco, Guerrero — The death toll from Hurricane Otis has risen to 45. Three of the dead are confirmed foreigners. The Governor of Guerrero, Evelyn Salgado Pineda, reported by telephone that as of October 30, there were 45 deaths according to the preliminary report from the State Attorney General’s Office.

“Our condolences to those who lost their lives, to family members and to all the people of Acapulco who were affected,” she said adding that there are still 47 known unaccounted for people.

“With reference to people who have not yet been located, either due to lack of communication or access, the search program that we have has been reinforced by the Ministry of the Interior, the national or local human rights commissions, the National Search Commission,” indicated the Governor.

The Attorney General of Guerrero, Sandra Luz Valdovinos Salmerón, confirmed that three of the deceased were of foreign nationalities. She reported that three people residing in Guerrero who died were of American, British and Canadian origin.

After the emergency medical evacuation of sick children, flights with stranded passengers have begun to arrive in Mexico City. Flights out of Acapulco were set to begin Saturday.

Several have landed at the Felipe Ángeles International Airport with stranded Acapulco tourists. In a social media post, the airport said “The Felipe Ángeles International Airport gives a pleasant welcome to people coming from Acapulco after the great impact that Hurricane Otis had on the city in the State of Guerrero. AIFA regrets the damage caused to an emblematic tourist destination in Mexico.”

While the city is far from normalized, movement has begun. As of Monday night, several Acapulco suburbs had their electricity restored. Fuel has arrived in the Port of Acapulco by a Pemex tanker. At least 12 gas stations have been refueled and opened to the public.

The Secretary of the Navy has reported that “our ships Usumacinta and Jalisco set sail from Manzanillo and Lázaro Cárdenas heading to Acapulco transporting two water purification plants, one mobile kitchenette, four power generating plants and two motor pumps. Later they will be enabled as hospitals and canteens.”

The Government of Mexico has begun door-to-door inspections of damaged homes. In rural communities, losses of crops and livestock were noted.

On Monday morning, President López Obrador said that this week, his government will present a plan for priority attention to the people and reactivation of small businesses, adding that hotels and restaurants that represent sources of employment will be supported.

“Federal officials will meet with business owners Monday and seek joint solutions. Work is being done I would say quite well and in an organized manner,” he said.

Boxes of food are being distributed to rural areas while military tents continue to expand for public access to food and supplies.

Water and telecommunications are expected to be up and running within a day or so since the CFE has been successful in mass power restoration in Acapulco, Renacimiento, Adolfo Ruiz Cortines, Lomas del Mar and Costa Azul, which supply a large part of the urban and suburban area.

As of Monday morning, 19 subtransmission lines and 21 of 30 substations had been restored. In distribution circuits, 95 of the 155 damaged have been restored . The relocation of poles continues. Of the 10,000 reported damaged, 3,570 have been repaired, a figure that continue to increase by the day.

“Very soon we will restore full electrical service and there will be no shortage of gasoline. On Monday, at dawn, a ship with gasoline and diesel arrived in Acapulco. Now we are waiting for all of Acapulco to be electrified so that the distribution of LP gas can begin which is going to help a lot,” AMLO said Monday.

The Secretary of National Defense, Luis Cresencio Sandoval González, said by telephone from Acapulco that personnel from the National Guard, Mexican Army and Air Force are providing security in the region with 11,500 elements deployed.

Night patrols, security filters and protection of gas stations and ten shopping centers has been set up. Additionally, they accompany shipments of food transferred to the Mundo Imperial collection center adding that security is recovering with the majority participation of the National Guard.

The governor of Guerrero says most of the roads in Guerrero are passable, as is the Autopista del Sol due to the ongoing clean up. The Secretary of Infrastructure, Communications and Transportation, Jorge Nuño Lara, reported that there is already passage through the Mexico-Acapulco highway.

On October 31, they will finish releasing 19 more points that are being cleared by six crews with 48 pieces of machinery who are attending to the blockades.

The Secretariats of National Defense (Sedena) and the Navy have been guaranteeing the distribution of food and water as well as establishing mobile community kitchens for the people of Acapulco and nearby rural communities affected by the Hurricane Otis.