Thursday, July 22, 2021

Isla Mujeres News & Events Thursday, July 22

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The Northern Zone of Quintana Roo remains in Orange, as does the Southern Zone, thru the first of August. The graphs represent the entire pandemic for the municipalities in the Northern Zone, with the past week in grey and statistics for Isla Mujeres showing a decrease. The Governor expressed concern about Cancun (Benito Juarez) which continues to report 200 new cases daily, and he is worried about the drastic increases reported in Solidaridad (Playa del Carmen). Lazaro Cardenas (Holbox) is also spiking. The graph for Puerto Morelos shows a considerable increase, but it has a small population and has frequently reported zeros. He described Tulum's graph as erratic and was pleased with its decrease. Cozumel's improvement is impressive.
Once again, the Governor emphasized the importance of being attentive to hygiene habits of mask wearing, social distancing and hand washing. He spoke about the benefits of vaccination and those activities around the state, noting those who are 18-29 are starting to get vaccinated. He also mentioned that the federal semaforo (epidemiological traffic light) could replace the state's system. It is also currently in Orange, and updated every two weeks.

As of today, the municipality of Isla Mujeres reports a total of 374 cases of C-19, with 39 deaths and 320 recovered since the pandemic began in 2020. Last Thursday, was a total of 366 cases reported in Isla Mujeres with 37 deaths and 306 recovered. This is an increase of 8 cases in a week and two deaths. One week prior (Thursday the 8th) there were 351 cases with 37 deaths and 295 recovered. There were 15 new cases reported that week, and no deaths. 


TODAY/Thursday...At the end of May, it was announced that the US was donating more than a million doses of J&J vaccine against C19, to be used mainly along the border and at resort areas frequented by Americans. Mexico's Foreign Minister Ebrand, as well as our C19 'czar' Dr Lopez Gatell, said that priority would be given to Caribbean resorts like Cancun and to Pacific-coast resorts like Los Cabos (in Baja California), as well as the border cities.

However, in June, nearly 1.25 million doses of the J&J vaccine were administered to Baja Californians representing 92.4% of the doses assigned for that state. At a national press conference, officials announced that Baja California was the first state where "people over 18 years of age are fully vaccinated, with at least one dose." (J&J is a single-dose vaccine.) Baja kept 10k doses for delays and transferred 85k to Sonora, a border state. There were 1.35 million doses donated.
This month our Governor said that Quintana Roo is ranked fifth in the nation in percentage of vaccination, which he said includes 46% of our state population. In Isla Mujeres both doses have been provided for residents 40 and older and first doses for those in their 30's (As far as I know, they were Astra Zeneca and Pfizer).
The Governor's weekly video begins around 8pm tonight, ending with the color announcements for the state epidemiological light, which I'll publish here. He includes information about vaccinations, sargasso updates, and public works reports, among other topics.
The graphic shows the adult population of our state, with the number and percentages of first and second doses, and a breakdown by age, as well as health personnel. It was posted July 13.

 Sources: National Press conferences link.  Our Governor link.  Re Baja California: Link   


TODAY/Thursday....A third Jetway ferry, with open seating on top and capacity for 250 passengers, is expected to begin operating soon. A manager said its maritime permits have been negotiated and are expected to arrive in five days. Service is expected to begin in late July or early August. Cambio 22 reports that the two Jetway ferries are already moving about 2500 passengers daily, with good acceptance from locals and tourists. On the mainland, they depart from the Puerto Juarez Maritime Terminal (not Gran Puerto). They offer 25 round trips daily, from the first departing the island at 6am to the last departing the mainland at 11p. Their round-trip adult rates are 320 pesos for tourists, 130 pesos for state residents, and 70 pesos for locals. News reports say they will provide an 80 peso round-trip rate for companies whose workers cross daily.

The Jetway website reports that each of the current ferries has a capacity for 400 pessengers, but IM Noticias claims they are smaller, with each having a capacity of 77 seated passengers.


Wednesday.... Cambio 22 reports that a foreign tourist lost her footing and fell while walking down the rocks to the beach on the Caribbean side, near the Trash Transfer Facility. It says she lost her balance and fell "aparatosamente" (spectacularly/dramatically) and rolled until she hit the sand and pebbles at the bottom of the cliff. Despite her body hitting the rocks repeatedly, she did not suffer serious injuries, just some scrapes and pain. The person accompanying her notified emergency services and the Red Cross ambulance arrived minutes later, whose paramedics determined she did not need to be transferred to the Community Hospital. The reporter notes there are thousands of tons of trash at the Transfer Facility, and the leachate may be contaminating the water in that area.LINK to article & photo (not on FB)

TUESDAY..... Golf cart-related injuries. Make sure your cart's brakes work well, be attentive to pedestrians & other vehicles and take care when accelerating & turning. Source & photo credit--Jim Guy

TUESDAY....The entire pandemic in Isla Mujeres is represented in the first graphic with the grey area showing a spike this past week, then cases declined. The first, highest spikes began in July a year ago, and dropped off in mid-September. Note: For the less populous municipalities, a couple of cases cause very noticeable graphic changes, while for Cancun it takes dozens (last graph). In his Thursday night update, the Governor said the Cancun had been reporting 200 new cases daily. For Isla Mujeres, last week's average was about two daily.

>>As of yesterday, the official total of C19 cases reported for Isla Mujeres since the start of the pandemic is 369, with 38 deaths and 311 recuperated. The Geoportal reports 5 active cases by colonia as: Salinas: 1, Electristas: 1, Meteorologico: 1, La Gloria: 1, and 23 de Noviembre: 1.
>>There have been 14,795 doses of C-19 vaccines administered in Isla Mujeres. Second doses have been administered to the residents 40 and over, and first doses have been given to the thirty-somethings.
>>The last graphic shows Cancun (Benito Juarez) is experiencing such an all-time, record-breaking high of cases that it caused the previous spikes to appear flattened out.
>>The NORTHERN ZONE's Growth Rate of cases has increased to 0.84, which was 0.77 last week, and in the previous weeks it was: 0.73, 0.63, 0.6, 0.59, 0.55 and 0.58. There are seven municipalities in the Northern Zone, with Benito Juarez (Cancun) being the most populous, and therefore having the most effect on our Zone's statistics. Here are the others, with the last three being the least populous: Solidaridad (Playa del Carmen), Cozumel, Tulum, Isla Mujeres, Lazaro Cardenas (Holbox), and Puerto Morelos.
>> To see all the graphs from last Thursday, see previous edition

SUNDAY...The mesh fence that was blocking this beach access at the southwestern part of the isle has been removed and replaced with signs promoting public access to the beaches, saying that the beaches belong to everyone and should not be privatized. Source & Video..TV Isla Mujeres

SUNDAY, July 18...In comparison to other beaches of the Mexican Caribbean, Isla Mujeres is fortunate to have sargasso-free beaches during this season when it arrives. This is due to the geographical orientation of the island and its swimming beaches, as well as the efforts of the cleaning crews who clean away any sargasso that washes up. Source & photo credit Isla Mujeres al Dia

Monday....Since the start of lobster-catching season on July 1st, three diver-fishermen have suffered from decompression, but only one of them required treatment in the hyperbaric chamber. This information was provided by the new doctor in-charge of the chamber, Dr. Betzaira León. Source & photo Isla Mujeres al Dia

MONDAY.... The Secretary of the Navy (SEMAR) has begun construction of a new hospital in Isla Mujeres on a space of 1600 square meters in colonia Salina Grande, which will serve personnel in the Naval housing area. The Navy is investing over 323 million pesos, according to "Buynet". It will be a second-level facility, providing specialists in internal medicine, surgery, pediatrics and OB-GYN, according to the Secretary of Health. It is expected to be completed this year and inaugurated in 2022. Source & photo credit: Isla Mujere Al Dia

SUNDAY...The lobster-catching season began 17 days ago, and is starting out slowly, especially in comparison to production by the cooperatives in the southern part of the state. The president of the state Federation of Fishing Cooperatives, Baltazar Gomez Catzin, explained that the season always starts out slowly, and is expected to improve significantly in October and thereafter.

He said it is unfortunate that the catches may be negatively influenced by poaching during the four-month ban, when the crustaceans are reproducing and full of roe.
He said that the fishermen using traps aren't catching very many lobster, noting that when production is good, they recheck them after a week, but they are currently leaving them for up to 15 days. The fishermen of the Social Justicia cooperative hope that everyone respects their fishing grounds since last season they lost or were robbed of about 100 traps, and another 75 had to be repaired, of the nearly 300 traps owned by the cooperative. Source & photos: La Tertulia

SUNDAY...Photo credit Isla Mujeres al Dia. The island's Pet Friendly Beach. Enjoy the Mexican Caribbean responsibly with your pets.

 SUNDAY...Noti Isla Mujeres reports that due to a broken buoy line, boats are coming closer to the beach, into the swimming area, which poses are risk to the people there. VIDEO  

 SUNDAY...Isla Mujeres Al Dia reports of complaints about jet skis putting swimmers at risk and says tourists are requesting that authorities give this immediate attention before an accident occurs. Photo credits Isla Mujere Al Dia

SATURDAY...The governor advises residents 20-40 years old to take extra precautions against C-19 because they're the new "At Risk" population. This is because second doses of vaccine have been administered to those 40 and older, except some municipalities are still jabbing the forty-somethings. First doses have been administered to those 30+ in Isla Mujeres & are in-process around the state. Residents in their 20's have been advised to register on the national mi vacuna site.

Nearly all recent hospitalizations and deaths are among the unvaccinated. Fully vaccinated individuals can still get Covid-19, but they are protected against the worst of it, and death is extremely unlikely.
The Governor notes: "The Spanish flu claimed the lives of 40 million people during its second wave of infections, when people relaxed preventive measures, because they were fed up of being in lockdown and wearing face masks. Let's not repeat history!"

SATURDAY....The first graphic is the Navy's official sargasso report for today, with Isla Mujeres beaches in Green/"scarce". It notes that since March, more than 23 tons have been removed from Q.Roo's beaches. On the 2nd graphic, we're in Blue/"without or with little", from the "Red de Monitoreo del Sargazo de Quintana Roo". Here's a link for the shoes made from sargasso & PET. LINK    


FRIDAY, July 16.. As of yesterday, there have been a total of 366 cases of C-19 officially reported in Isla Mujeres with 37 deaths and 306 recovered. One week prior (last Thursday the 8th) there were 351 cases with 37 deaths and 295 recovered. A difference of 15 new cases in a week.

As of yesterday, 14,081 doses of C-19 have been administered in our municipality. Both doses have been provided for residents who are forty and over. First doses have been administered to those in their 30's, and the twenty-somethings were advised to register last week.
THERE ARE SEVEN MUNICIPALITIES IN OUR "NORTHERN ZONE" OF Q Roo--The more populous ones like Cancun (Benito Juarez), Playa del Carmen (Solidaridad), Tulum and Cozumel have more influence on the statistics than Holbox (Lazaro Cardenas), Isla Mujeres, and Puerto Morelos.
The Northern Zone's GROWTH RATE of cases has increased to 0.77, which was 0.73 last week and previously 0.63, 0.6, 0.59, 0.55 and 0.58.
The Northern Zone's CONTAGION RATE increased to 1.1 from 1.06 last week. When the Contagion Rate is above 1, the curve is ascending. When it is below one, the curve declines and at 1 it plateaus.


FRIDAY.... TODAY'S UPDATE--JETWAY NOW PROVIDES LONGER FERRY HOURS THAN ULTRAMAR!! The first ferry departs Isla Mujeres at 6a and the last ferry departs Puerto Juarez at 11p!!

(Note that they depart from the API Maritime Terminal in Puerto Juarez, not Gran Puerto. Island-resident rate is 70p round trip & tourists pay 320 (except state residents).

FRIDAY...The two Jetway ferries are providing passenger service to the island with 24 round-trips daily, departing Puerto Juárez from 6:30 am to 9 pm and from Isla Mujeres 7 am until 10 pm.

 NOTE--These hours have been extended so the first boat departs the isle at 6a and last departs Puerto Juarez at 11, so I'm not including the first schedule with this post. Each boat has a capacity of 400 passengers. Note that they depart from the Api Maritime Terminal in Puerto Juarez (first photo), not from Gran Puerto.
In the last screenshot the company states they don't currently provide ferry service for vehicles, but they hope to do that soon. La Tertulia reports that although there was only one passenger for their first departure from Puerto Juarez, they maintained their schedule and made the crossing.
Their website is here:

There was a fire in a fruit store on prologacion Rueda Medina, near Broncos, with only material damage, which was extinguished by the firefighters.  LINK   

More video of the firefighters extinguishing the fruiteria fire...the reporter walks around to the front at ~seven & a half minutes.     LINK  

FRIDAY....La Tertulia reports that the Captain of the boat "Rosa Coral" will make a declaration in upcoming days to the Ministerio Público /Public Prosecutor's Office about the sinking of his boat on July 13, which resulted in the unfortunate deaths of two adults and a child. An investigation has been opened to determine responsibility for the crime of homicide and aggravated injury against different persons.

So far, only one person has testified, and the boat captain, Noah K.T., 32, has been given several days, in consideration that one of the victims was his wife, from whom he was separated. The family originated from Acanceh, Yucatan.
It says the Navy rescued 11 of those on board (Note--it was reported that one or two persons swam to the island, which appeared to be true from a video). With support from Isla Mujeres seamen, the bodies were found of the 45 year-old male, and of the 5 year-old child, who were the brother-in-law and the nephew of the boat's captain. His ex-wife's body was recovered from the rocky area of Punta Sur. Although there were life jackets on board, apparently no one was wearing them.
The other article (dated 7/14) by La Tertulia reports the cause was a possible engine failure while passing thru the "jilero" area, according to one crew member who swam to Punta Sur to seek help. The alert had already been given to 911, bringing police, paramedics, Civil Protection, Port officials and the Mexican Navy to the scene, where fishermen joined in the rescue effort. It says they found one of the bodies more than a mile from the sunken boat, and that the man and child were father and son.
It says after they were rescued by the Mexican Navy, seven people were taken to the Community Hospital, where they were stabilized. Then they were taken to the IMSSS hospital in Cancun where five were reported to be in stable condition and two were in serious condition. Photo by David Daniel.

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Fine dining a few steps away at Da Luisa or try the neighborhood eateries a couple blocks farther. We provide a list of links & direction to over 20 eateries within ten minutes walk, including Mango Cafe,  Mike's Pizza, Brisas, Rosa Sirena, Coco Jaguar, Manolitos, Green Verde, Kash Kechen Chuc, and the large department store-grocery Chedraui & the local craft brewery.  Visit marinas, bars, & beach clubs that are minutes away by bike or on foot. Attend Yoga classes a couple villas away at Casa Ixchel. Fresh juice, produce & tortillas a few blocks away in the village, as well as a variety of other stores.


Public events have been suspended due to C-19, mostly.

Sources for Weather Information:
LINK to Civil Protection Q Roo weather bulletin  (Spanish)
LINK to Mexico National Weather Service (Spanish)
 LINK to satellite images for the Mexico National Weather Service
 LINK to GOES East Band 16 GIF (animation)
LINK to a private weather station on Isla Mujeres

LINK to US National Hurricane Center 

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