Sunday, January 24, 2010

Beach Buzz: Storm Damage Report, Feed the Children

-by La Huerita

If the recent set of winter storms that hit Rocky Point had happened during hurricane season, they would have had names. That's how serious it was, and all that wind and rain did some serious damage, especially for those residents who lacked adequate housing. Word is that at least a couple hundred residents had to flee to shelters, and many have lost what little they had.

Add to that the hardships that local familes are enduring due to the financial and tourism crisis, and the picture isn't pretty. Dr. George Stavros (the Playa Encanto HOA President) holds free clinics each month in the barrio (which is, unfortunately, growing). According to a recent Playa Encanto newsletter, he is finding many of the people, especially children, are showing signs of malnutrition. To that end, Playa Encanto is asking for contributions to their Rice and Beans program. They will collect as much dry beans and rice as possible (also needed are children's vitamins) and distribute these at each of the clinics. This is a start to what they hope will be an on-going program to help feed our neighbors.

You don't have to live in Playa Encanto or be a member of the HOA to help out. The next homeowners meeting is Feb. 13 at Tres Amigos, so if you're in town please drop off some rice and beans and whatever else you can contribute (after that storm, lots of children's clothing is needed, too). If you would like to contribute but can't make it down at that time, you might want to contact one of the following good people to ask how you can help.

Now, back to that storm. It was a real doozy, alright! Along with the rain, there were waves estimated at 10 to 15 feet pounding the beaches and splashing over the malecon. Sustained winds of 30-45mph over about a 3-day period, with regular gusts clocked much higher (I was told that one gust out near Playa Encanto clocked in at nearly 100mph). Schools and businesses were closed, trees blown down, many streets were washed out, and altogether it was a hunkering down time. Further south, huge waves and up to 70 mph wind gusts were reported at Santo Tomas, and even Caborca suffered a lot of flooding and wind damage.

On Sandy Beach, there are reports of windows and even sliding glass doors blown out in some of the condos at the Sonoran Sea and Sonoran Spa, and the assumption is that other condo buildings probably also suffered the same way though that HAS NOT BEEN CONFIRMED. There have also been reports of damage of patio ceilings at some end units of Puerto Pravada and Sonoran Sea, and major damage at Building 4 of Las Palomas, which reportedly lost part of a wall. The Mirador area seems to be mostly OK, along with other established parts of town further away from the beach. I haven't heard about conditions out at Tessoro at Las Conchas, but perhaps in that case silence is really golden?

You can pretty well bet that a lot of sand has shifted inland and that potholes the size of Rhode Island have popped up here and there. Hwy 8 from the border is driveable, but expect potholes along the way, mud, and sand blown over the road in places and drive accordingly.

The town is mopping up now and assessing the damage, but if you own a condo or home anywhere along the beach and can't get down to Rocky Point yourself, you should get in touch with the appropriate HOA or management company and get a report.

If I get any more confirmed reports, I'll update this.

And that's all the Buzz on the Beach for today.

About Beach Buzz: Not necessarily the news, this is a place for information, opinion, speculation, gossip, tips and other good stuff about Rocky Point, and Mexico in general. Have opinions to air, anecdotes to share, tips or tidbits to contribute? I'd like to hear from you!

Email me: La Huerita

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