Editorial Wake of the Flood

Sometimes we who live in Puerto Vallarta don’t fully appreciate our local abundance of blue skies until we travel elsewhere or when a really big weather system leaves us with prolonged overcast skies. It’s amazing that even in the peak of our rainy season, the sun shines through strongly for much of the day building up towering storm clouds for our usual evening soakings.
September closed with more than just our normal rainy season storms however. Close on the heels of Hurricane Lorena which passed the week before came Tropical Storm Narda. Even though Narda was downgraded to a depression by the time she poured over Puerto Vallarta, she unleashed mighty torrents of rain throughout the night of September 29th and well into the following morning for a total gully washer.
Communities on the south side of Banderas Bay were especially hard-hit with Yelapa perhaps the most affected. Closer to home for most of us, at the border of Puerto Vallarta and Cabo Corrientes, the Río Los Horcones flowed past its banks for its greatest flood since the installation of the new Malecón (boardwalk) of Boca de Tomatlán Malecón.
The two pedestrian bridges that connect the Boca de Tomatlán community were rendered impassable for most of the day on Monday, September 30th. The upstream suspension bridge was wiped away completely during the flood and will need to be rebuilt from scratch. The downstream concrete bridge was completely overwhelmed for hours by strong currents flowing with mud and rocks, and the bridge will need to be inspected thoroughly to determine if its structural integrity has been compromised.
In downtown Puerto Vallarta, Protección Civil closed traffic near the Río Cuale for several hours as river water overflowed its banks there too. Mud and debris from the river temporarily clogged storm drains flooding out parts of Calles 5 de Febrero, Achiles Serdán, and Ignacio L. Vallarta until emergency and maintenance crews were able to clear them for traffic. Fortunately, work is moving quickly as the Puerto Vallarta community recovers from a very wet close to September.
Hoping for milder weather for the rest of October!

Neil Gerlowski