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Mexican authorities have announced that the death toll from catastrophic Category 5 Hurricane Otis is 39 with 10 still missing.
Security Secretary Rosa Icela Rodríguez, in a video message alongside President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, revealed that the cause of death for most of the deceased was “suffocation by submersion.” Yet, identifying the victims is ongoing.
#JuntosPorAcapulco | El sobrevuelo por las zonas afectadas en Guerrero por el huracán Otis, permite diseñar la estrategia de restablecimiento eléctrico. Posteriormente, las unidades aéreas apoyan con el traslado de trabajadores, vehículos, estructuras y otros materiales. pic.twitter.com/BLt8RIZoBP— CFEmx (@CFEmx) October 28, 2023
Government workers, aided by volunteers, are clearing the debris-laden streets, with lines forming at gas stations and citizens scrambling for essential supplies. While Acapulco’s touristic center witnesses some semblance of order and relief operations, its outskirts depict a scene of chaos. Essential services like cellphone signals and electricity are patchy, and residents are navigating through muddy and flooded streets in search of food and water.
Residents of #Mexico's Acapulco city are desperately seeking aid, after #HurricaneOtis wreaked havoc in the iconic beach resort. Hundreds of thousands of homes are without electricity as locals empty stores of everything from food to toilet paper. #Category5 pic.twitter.com/Lg7jPacS5V— Schweiker Cody (@SchweikerC1191) October 28, 2023
Efforts from volunteers, like a group from Puebla, are seen handing out food bags to families along highways. Amidst these dire circumstances, there are concerns over resource management, with people reporting a lack of gasoline not due to a shortage but rather an absence of electricity to operate the pumps.
As the city moves towards recovery, López Obrador has announced increased military presence to ensure security. He also stated that the national electric company has restored power to 55% of the affected area, but over 200,000 establishments remain in the dark. The federal civil defense agency also highlighted that around 220,000 homes have been adversely impacted by Hurricane Otis.