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Strong winds cause port closures, early sargasso arrival

Playa del Carmen, Q.R. — A thunderstorm that rolled through the Playa del Carmen region Sunday brought with it sargasso and strong waves that resulted in port closures.

Due to strong winds and high swells, port captains were forced to issue temporary port closures of several ferry crossings at Playa del Carmen and Cozumel. The closures included Ultramar ferries who were unable to make the crossings.

The waves also encouraged the arrival of sargasso along many of Playa del Carmen’s beaches. Ulises Gavia Díaz, municipal director of Zofemat, commented that all the algae that had been arriving little-by-little suddenly came together due to the turbulent state of the sea.

With the first official day of Semana Santa, municipal brigades were out in full force removing the sargasso from public beaches, while hotels had private workers discard the unwanted seaweed away from their sandy spots.

Wind gusts that caused the arrival of sargasso and the port closures were recorded in excess of 70 kms/hour. More than 100 passengers found themselves suddenly stuck in Cozumel when the Harbor Master announced the port closure due to the strong winds.

Ports have since reopened.