Thursday, August 12, 2021

Isla Mujeres News & Events Thursday, August 12

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Our Northern Zone remains in Orange next week, August 16-22, as does the Southern Zone. Our Zone's Contagion Rate remains at 1.12, which means each case is infecting more than one other case. While most of the municipal graphs show an increase (aumento) in new cases for the 15 day period, the Governor was pleased that most, including Isla Mujeres, ended with their curve declining. Benito Juarez in Cancun, Solidaridad is Playa del Carmen, Holbox is in Lazaro Cardenas. Our Zone's hospital occupancy is at 54%.

      The deadline closed yesterday at 1pm for nominees for the annual Medal of Merit for Tourism and the Citizen Merit Medal, with two candidates for each honor. The municipal committee el Consejo de Adjudicación for the medals will meet soon and determine the winners of the Tourism award, which is named in honor of Lic. José de Jesús Lima Gutiérrez, and the Citizen award, which is named in honor of Don Alfonso Ríos Azueta. The medals will be presented at the special session of the City Council on August 17, which is part of the celebration of the 171st anniversary of the founding of Isla Mujeres, and will be held virtually due to the pandemic.

    WEDNESDAY/YESTERDAY NIGHT....Residents in colonia Salina Chica were concerned that a transformer near Mamá Lolita was emitting sparks & they wanted personnel with the CFE (Federal Electrical Commission) to intervene.

     WEDNESDAY/YESTERDAY....The Mayor-elect of Isla Mujeres, Atenea Gomez Ricalde, met with the manager of the Federal Electrical Commission (CFE) National and other officials, including Directors of the municipal Departments of Urban Development and Catastro (Deeds), to discuss solving the problems of the recurrent power outages affecting the families and businesses of the island and of noise from the electrical generators. She said people want to know the current status of the underwater electrical line.

     Miguel Angel Bastarrachera Chan, CFE's Regional Manager of Generación Termoeléctrica Peninsular, said two calls for contract-bids have been launched for replacement of the underwater line, but in both cases they were unsuccessful. ("delcarado desierta la convocatoria"). He said they hope to launch another call this month and to move forward in the process of providing a new power supply line for the entire island.
       He explained that this process will take at least five years because once the bid-contract is completed, the cable must be produced, and then installed, followed by testing.
The Mayor-elect addressed the problem of complaints about noise, pollution and fuel storage associated with the electrical generator that was installed on the airfield two years ago. CFE officials said they plan to install a new, next-generation power plant, which will also be much quieter, near the Trash Transfer Facility, at the southern part of the isle, on property owned by the state government. The officials toured that site and the current site.

      Personnel with the municipal Department of Civil Protection repaired, and re-repaired, the buoy line, which was affected by the large number of boats that moor in the area and ended up breaking it. The Director of the department, Merced Ortiz Maya noted that Isla Mujeres is one of the few destinations in Quintana Roo with sargasso-free beaches, and many tourists want to enjoy both the sandy beaches and the yachts & boats that park offshore and may put the swimmers at risk.
        He said, "We have been talking with the Harbor Master, which is the authority responsible for limiting the swimming area from the boats. We know there have been many citizen-complaints about jet skis; and we are working on it as far as the law allows us as Civil Protection, but remember that the authorities in charge in this case are the Navy and the Harbor Master."
He noted that during this summer vacation period, the lifeguards have been very active at the Media Luna Beach, which is the only beach at the northern part of the island where swimming is prohibited.      
        He said that the lifeguards deal with reckless people every day who ignore recommendations and signs banning swimming in the area and go into the sea without regard for the danger, especially when the lifeguards leave at the end of their shift.
     He said the lifeguards work hard at Playa Centro and North Beach where many tourists visit, and they are responsible for preventative advisories to the swimmers and guidance for the general public about safety measures to avoid accidents and bad experiences during their visit to Isla Mujeres. Source-Isla Mujeres al Momento

       Ultramar has added a late ferry departing the mainland at 11p, and leaving the island at midnight....probably in response to Jetway offering later service than they'd been providing.

Personnel with the municipal Department of Parks & Gardens continue to provide maintenance for the landscaped public areas of the island including the parks, planters, shoulders and medians. Last week they worked on the shoulders and medians in various areas including the avenues of Rueda Medina & Paseo de los Peces, along the airfield strip, and in the colonias of La Gloria, Ampliación La Gloria, Electricistas, Caridad del Cobre, Lol-Beh and Salina Grande.

WEDNESDAY/YESTERDAY....Nearly 84% of state's adult population have received their first C-19 vaccine. In Isla Mujeres, 81.5% have gotten their first dose and 58.5% are fully vaccinated, with a total of 20,846 doses administered

    In his video last (Tuesday) evening, Governor Joaquin once again pointed out what a difference vaccination is making. He said it is important to note that 90% of patients hospitalized with C-19 in Quintana Roo are unvaccinated. Of the other ten percent, 8.5% received one dose and only 1.5% were fully vaccinated.
     This week's ranking of the state's ten most-infected neighborhoods includes four colonias in Cancun, with one taking first place with 16 active cases. Isla Mujeres didn't make the list, and the Geoportal shows a total of 11 active cases on the island. Three are in colonia La Gloria, two are in Salina Grande, and there's one each in Meteorologico, Salinas (Salina Chica), Downtown, 23 de Noviembre, Caridad del Cobre, and El Canotal. As of yesterday, Isla Mujeres reported a total of 404 cases with 38 deaths and 345 recovered, since the start of the pandemic.
        The Governor said our state's C-19 Contagion Rate has been at 1.12, which means each infected person is infecting more than one other person and the curve remains in ascension. In our Northern Zone, hospital occupancy has increased to about 50 percent. He said the large population of Cancun (Benito Juarez municipality) has a strong effect on the state's statistics and has recently demonstrated some stabilization with a small decline in cases, but the large, very concerning increase in Solidaridad (Playa del Carmen) has continued and requires increased precautions. Both Zones (Northern & Southern) of the state remain in the Orange status, and Q Roo is also Orange on the Federal epidemiological light. The next local update will be tomorrow (Thursday/today) night, for Aug 16-22.
      He said the state, like the country and the rest of the world, has recently faced increased levels of contagion due to C-19 variants, particularly the Delta variant. He explained that the virus is principally spread by aerosols and the probability of contagion when people breathe and talk is strongly affected by ventilation, the use of face masks, and the amount of time spent interacting. He said 31% of contagions occur at social interactions, such as those between friends and family. Prolonged exposure in closed spaces should be avoided and the use of exterior, well-ventilated spaces is beneficial for reducing contagion, as is as limiting the length of contact. He emphasized the importance of personal responsibility to protect yourselves and your families, and the need for businesses to comply with limitations on capacities and hours.
        He spoke about coordinated governmental efforts over the past six weeks to reduce mobility, encourage compliance with prevention measures and facilitate access to vaccines for all residents over 18 years of age. He said coordination is better in some municipalities than others to facilitate control of the propagation of the virus, listing the municipal governments of Isla Mujeres, Tulum and Solidaridad (Playa del Carmen) as having less coordinated efforts. He repeatedly emphasized the importance of not permitting public events & parties, enforcing capacities and hours, increasing testing, and the necessity of face masks and health-habits that limit contagion.
        The state Coordinator of Civil Protection discussed their operations on the ferry docks at Playa del Carmen-Cozumel and in Puerto Juarez, which include exhorting visitors & residents to wear face masks. He said they are conducting similar operations on the main avenue in Tulum, where eight out of ten people they encounter aren't wearing face masks. (Masks are mandatory in pubic areas throughout the state, by law.) He responded "Both!" when asked whether it's visitors or residents who aren't complying. He noted that responsibility lies with both authorities and individuals. He also explained that the hurricane shelters are ready to receive residents and visitors if they are needed, and he noted that a majority are in schools, which have been unused for the past year. No storms are currently threatening our region.
        Governor Joaquin spoke from Mexico City where he had an opportunity to talk with the Director of the Federal Electrical Commission (CFE) about the recent outages and various electrical problems in Quintana Roo, including the outdated electrical cables that have become insufficient for the islands. He said new solutions are needed for problems on the islands of Cozumel, Mujeres and Holbox, which include their very old electrical plants (generators) and a lack of newer technologies. He said the meeting was very productive and included discussions of the CFE's plans to address these issues and their plans for new projects and investments in infrastructure.

.TUESDAY....The Naval Search & Rescue boat responded to an emergency call to assist a man who was about half a mile (one kilometer) from Isla Mujeres after currents moved his stand-up paddle board farther and farther from the coast of Punta Sur. They transported the Brazilian male to the Naval pier where a medical examination found him to be in good health and he departed by his own means.

This VIDEO (LINK)  is about the manatee that emigrated to Isla Mujeres from Florida, which is a different species than the manatees here. Mexican authorities contacted the US Fish & Wildlife Service who were able to identify this individual manatee by his propeller scars. In February, experts found him to be in good health when he was captured in order to give him a medical check-up, then they released him with a tracking device. They estimated his age to be about 40 and expect his life-span to be around sixty years. The advisory says not to touch or pursue him and not to give him food or water. These are screenshots from the video by

Asoc. Mex. de Hábitats para Interacción y Protección de Mamíferos Marinos

WEDNESDAY /YESTERDAY MORNING....Tropical Storm Fred isn't threatening our region, which is expected to affect the Dominican Republic & Puerto Rico today, Cuba & the Bahamas tomorrow & the US on Friday. A Tropical Depression could form early next week from that tropical wave moving westward across the Atlantic at nearly 20mph producing disorganized showers & thunderstorms. Our four-day forecast looks good & it's sunny this morning!

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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. Some holidays have featured online competitions and events. 

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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