Tourism officials in Puerto Vallarta are reporting no major damage after the passage of Hurricane Willa. Following an evacuation of the area at 4 p.m. Tuesday, authorities have determined that there is a significant decrease in the risk of storm surges and winds and that operations in the destination can return to normal.
Puerto Vallarta’s tourism infrastructure — including Licenciado Gustavo Díaz Ordaz International Airport, which has remained open; trans-national roads; and the marina, cruise port, and Pier Los Muertos, which provides access to areas south of Puerto Vallarta such as Yelapa — will return to normal operations, officials said.
City services will also be back to normal, including schools and garbage collection. Cleaning crews and public works and public services personnel have begun the work of clearing debris left by the high winds and waves.
According to Adrian Bobadilla, head of Civil Protection and Puerto Vallarta’s Fire Department, a total of 587 tourists and 62 locals were housed in city shelters because they were in high-risk areas, mostly around local bodies of water. He also mentioned that many locals opted to stay with family members while some hotels conducted voluntary evacuations according to their own contingency plans.
Mayor Davalos highlighted the work done by the different agencies involved, including Mexico’s Ministry of National Defense, Mexico’s Navy, the Federal Police, the representation of the Ministry of the Interior, the VIII Sanitary Jurisdiction, State DIF, the State Civil Protection Unit, State Tourism Secretariat, SEAPAL Vallarta, DRSE and different municipal dependencies.
He also recognized the active participation of the neighborhood associations of the Centro and Emiliano Zapata ”colonies”; the Association of Hotels; Coparmex, Mexico’s employers’ association; Canirac, the restaurant and food service industry association; local shopping centers and banking institutions; the media, which served as a vital link with the population; and, lastly, society at large.