Pictures show devastation of Hurricane Otis in Mexico which killed at least 27
Survivors of the extreme storm are resorting to looting stores for basic supplies.
Survivors of an extreme storm in Mexico are resorting to looting stores for basic supplies.
The resort city of Acapulco has been devastated by Hurricane Otis, which has been rated a Category 5 storm – with wind speeds of around 165mph.
At least 27 people were killed and four, including three military personnel, remain missing following the hurricane which hit on Wednesday.
Footage and images show how the storm ripped through the port city, destroying beach fronts and 80% of hotels.
Desperate tourists and locals were told to loot stores so they could have access to food and fluids.
Paola Ruiz Velasco, a tourist from Mexico City, said: ‘I went to the naval base because they said there was a shelter there, but the soldiers just stared at me like I was crazy.
‘They didn’t even give us a bottle of water, nothing. They told us to go and steal from a store so we could have something.’
Acapulco’s police chief Luis Enrique Vazquez Rodriguez said yesterday: ‘We don’t have the capacity to stop looting because there’s so many people. This is a completely extraordinary situation.
‘There is no possibility or force capacity in any part of the country. This happens and has happened in other areas.’
Much of the city has been left paralysed after mud, flooding and fallen trees left roads closed.
A quarter of a million homes and businesses were still left without electricity last night after fears grew that repair efforts may focus on tourism rather than helping the poor.
The Mexican government said it deployed around 10,000 troops to help in the aftermath of the storm, but equipment to clear roads was slow to arrive.
Mexico’s president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said Otis had toppled every power-line pole in the area where it hit.
He said an air bridge will be established to move in resources after commercial and military airports in the area are still too damaged to resume flights.
As mobile phone signals began to return to some parts of the city, locals created WhatsApp groups to try and find loved ones, resources and shelter.
It is feared it may take up to a year for Acapulco to recover, but others remained optimistic.
Marketing expert Antonio Esparza said: ‘This is going to improve Acapulco, because it will force the government to pay attention.’
Acapulco is at the foot of steep mountains and is surrounded by luxury homes and slums, with views of the Pacific Ocean.
Weather experts are now working to establish why they did not foresee the storm, after the hurricane was expected to weaken quickly before it hit the city.
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