Hurricane Otis Victims Scavenge for Food in Mexico

by Ella

In the aftermath of Hurricane Otis, which left a path of destruction and claimed at least 27 lives, the residents of Acapulco find themselves facing a dire situation as they search for basic necessities, particularly food. The hurricane’s impact has pushed many to desperate measures in the quest for sustenance.

Amparo Ponce, 57, found herself guarding a stash of essential groceries in a store that had been looted. With an air of urgency, she appealed for assistance from the authorities, reflecting the dire circumstances that many are grappling with in the hurricane’s wake.


While some managed to forage the ravaged supermarket shelves for items to take home, the majority of them had already been stripped bare of provisions. An act of desperation drove some to turn to alcohol and even electronics such as televisions.


Outside, reports emerged of supermarket staff opening doors to allow people to take what they needed, illustrating the extraordinary challenges the community is facing.


Guillermina Morales expressed the overwhelming struggle some residents are confronting, saying, “We can’t find food. All the stores are already looted.”


Similar scenes played out across Acapulco as the need for food and water drove residents to scavenge for supplies. Some navigated streets strewn with debris, clutching toilet paper, eggs, and bread, determined to secure their families’ sustenance.

“It’s a survival instinct,” remarked one man carrying a bag of flour to make traditional tortillas, encapsulating the resolve of those enduring these difficult circumstances.

More than 24 hours after Hurricane Otis made landfall as a Category 5 storm, Acapulco remained in darkness, with power outages affecting the majority of the city. Communication was patchy, leaving residents isolated and in desperate need of support.

Arturo Aviles, a 48-year-old store owner, emphasized the dire situation: “We need support from the government or from someone because the truth is that it’s very bad. They have not come to support us yet. We’re in a difficult, complicated situation. Many people are hungry.”

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has made commitments to provide the essential resources to aid Acapulco during this challenging time. However, relief efforts have been hindered by road blockages and communication breakdowns.

The government has activated an emergency plan to bring vital supplies, including food and water, to the affected areas. The military is actively distributing 100,000 food packages and 800,000 liters of water, with additional supplies en route.

The daunting task of relief and recovery is further complicated by the extensive damage left in the hurricane’s wake. Roadways are obstructed by debris, while some buildings bear gaping holes in their walls, highlighting the scale of destruction.

What was once a vibrant tourist hub has been silenced in the aftermath of Hurricane Otis. Acapulco’s bustling streets, lined with lively restaurants and clubs, now lay dormant. The devastation has left the community grappling with the monumental task of recovery, as the prospect of a crucial year-end holiday season remains uncertain.

Jose David Mendoza, a 63-year-old businessman, expressed the overwhelming sentiment of the city: “It’s total chaos. It’s indescribable. I’ve never seen something like this in my life, so destroyed, without water, electricity. The beach is a garbage dump.”

Mendoza, inspecting his flooded beachside restaurant, shared his concern about the future, saying, “It will take time to recover. All Acapulcans are dismayed by what happened. We need immediate help.”



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