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Public urged to return home after Cancun, Isla Mujeres beaches shut

Cancun, Q.R. — All public beaches in the municipality of Benito Juárez have been posted with red flags, indicating their closure, which this time, is not due to strong currents.

The red flags have been put in the sand as an indication that all beaches are closed due to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic that has caused local authorities to recommend people stay in their homes. Cancun beaches are not only closed, but without lifeguards.

Jorge Aguilar Osorio, secretary general of City Council explained that Cancun mayor Mara Lezama Espinosa made the decision last week, saying they cannot expose their lifeguards in public spaces because of people who refuse to abide by the stay-at-home recommendations.

“We continue to urge people to stay at home. This is complicated and we must all make the effort,” said the municipal official.

Beaches around Isla Mujeres are also off limits to beachgoers as authorities patrol public areas requesting people return home.

The municipal government, headed by Juan Carrillo Soberanis, continues to strengthen preventive protocols throughout the municipality. Jaime Ongay Ortiz, general director of Public Security and Municipal Traffic explained that elements from Civil Protection and the Federal Terrestrial Maritime Zone (Zofemat) continue to tour beaches and public areas, encouraging people to return home.

Merced Ortiz Maya, director of Civil Protection said that free transit is not being restricted to anyone, what we are doing, he said, “is to kindly invite the population to help prevent the spread and contagion of the virus in our municipality. The preventive measures are everyone’s task,” he said.

Permanent guards have been positioned on the island’s more popular beaches where potential sunbathers are asked to go back home. He says the sole objective is to take care of the population by promoting social distancing avoiding the possible contagion and spread of the virus.

In an information release, municipal mayor Juan Carrillo Soberanis says the government is urging everyone to follow the health recommendations issued by the World Health Organization.

All non-essential businesses have also closed, as have ports to private and tourist vessels. Island hotels are also part of the temporary shutdown. All bars, discos, gyms, parks and sports fields have been closed and tournaments and massive events have been canceled.