Monday, October 24, 2005

(Trans. from Diario de Yucatan) 'Anguish and Desolation' - 10/24/05

(from today's Diario de Yucatan, Oct. 24, 2005

* Robbery worsens the chaos in Cancun, converting it into a distaster zone
* Authorities in Cozumel decree curfew

Inhabitants of Cancun awoke yesterday after a 3-day nightmare to see their city turned into a disaster zone. Telephone posts, furniture, telephone booths, bus stops and garbage floated in the avenues turned into rivers and striking the flooded houses and devastated public buildings in waves.

Inhabitants of Cancun believe they woke up to "another city." As one of them, Hugo Martoccia, said, "it's as if Wilma had destroyed a puppet, a paper city."

Yesterday, families rejoined in the flooded squares and streets. Some had waited through days of uncertainty, with neither food, potable water, electricity nor telephone.

Anguish and desolation is the face of the Riviera Maya. The catastrophe in Cancun, Cozumel, Isla Mujeres and Playa Del Carmen is of capital proportions. "At the moment we can not quantify the devastation, but we can affirm that Wilma has caused the worst disaster in the history of Quintana Roo," declared Governor, Felix Gonzalez Canto, reporting prudently.

In addition to the tragedy, Cancun bore witness yesterday to uncontrollable acts of robbery, the downtown looting of stores, services and commercial enterprises to the degree in which military soldiers had to fire shots into the air to control the disturbance.

In Cozumel, authorities reported serious damage to hotel infrastructure, docks and central operations. Authorities ordered a curfew on the island from 7 in the evening until 7 in the morning, owing to the be multiple damages from the hurricane, food shortages and acts of vandalism.


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