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PDC tourist paddleboarding in strong winds found 10 kilometers from starting point

Playa del Carmen, Q.R. — Navy personnel rescued a 37 year old woman Monday after being dragged out to sea. Despite the near hurricane strength winds, the area tourist from Guadalajara entered the water with the intention of paddleboarding.

The woman entered the water at Playa Gaviotas in central Playa del Carmen and was quickly pushed out to sea. She was fortunate in that she had her cell phone with her and was able to call for help.

A search involving the Navy, Civil Protection and the Security Secretariat of Solidaridad began for the woman around 1:15 p.m. tracking her phone’s GPS as she was pushed by the winds and dragged by currents.

A state helicopter was used to track her while a Navy vessel was sent out for the rescue. The woman was finally pulled aboard the vessel near Punta Marama in north Playa del Carmen, more than 10 kilometers from her original starting point.

A state helicopter was used to track the woman while a Navy vessel set out for her rescue.
Photo: SSC February 5, 2024.

Jorge Vázquez Oropeza, the Municipal Secretary of Civil Protection, confirmed the woman was rescued by Navy personnel Monday. According to the Secretaría de Protección Civil (SPC), the woman was finally rescued late Monday afternoon, being located four kilometers off the coast of Playa del Carmen.

“We carried out the rescue of a person who was swept away by strong sea currents while she was on the beach of the CTM federal zone since 1:15 p.m. yesterday. She was rescued at approximately 5:20 p.m., about 4 kilometers from the coast, near Punta Maroma,” the SPC reported.

In a statement, the Secretaría de Seguridad Ciudadana (SSC) of Quintana Roo reported “thanks to the coordinated search and location work, the rescue was achieved of a tourist from Guadalajara who remained for several minutes in the open sea in the municipality of Solidaridad after entering said area and being dragged by the current caused by the north winds that were registered in Quintana Roo.

Due to the strong winds, a large Navy vessel was sent in the search and rescue of the lost tourist. Photo: SSC February 5, 2024.

“Elements from the Navy Secretariat (SEMAR), Civil Protection and the Quintana Roo Citizen Security Secretariat participated in the rescue, who took the woman to the mainland to receive medical attention, where it was reported that she is healthy and safe.”