Gov’t Test Finds No Tainted Alcohol at Mexico Resort

A view of the beach and hotels in Cancun
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A test by the government of Mexico has found no indication of tainted alcohol at the Iberostar Paraiso del Mar.

Riviera Maya News reports that lab tests of alcoholic beverages served at the resort were found to be normal, containing no adulterants, including taurine products that are commonly found in energy drinks.

For their part, they are clean however, we are going to remain attentive in what confers to the surveillance of the destination in these types of cases, Julio Mendoza Alvarez, the head of Mexicos Federal Commission for Protection Against Sanitary Risks (Cofepris), told Riviera Maya News.

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Allegations that resorts in Playa del Carmen and Cancun were serving tainted alcohol had surfaced after 20-year-old Abbey Conner was found unconscious in a pool in January at the Iberostar Paraiso del Mar and later died. Subsequent investigations by an attorney hired by her family and the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel uncovered reports of other travelers who claimed that they had experienced sickness, blackouts and injuries after drinking at resorts in the area.

Following the reports in consumer media, the Sate Department updated the Safety and Security section of its Mexico country page to alert travelers to the allegations. The State Department advised travelers to drink in moderation and seek medical attention if they feel ill.

Representatives of major resorts Travel Agent spoke with said that their resorts maintain high levels of food and alcohol safety. Common safety precautions include purchasing liquor in sealed containers, regular audits of safety and sanitary procedures, and monitoring of staff and public areas through security cameras. Representatives of Iberostar Hotels & Resorts also said that the company plans to roll out additional security cameras in the building interiors, pool areas and outside bars in the Parais Complex.

What can travel agents do? Representatives of major insurance companies we spoke with recommended that concerned travelers be sure to travel with insurance that acts as primary coverage, which, depending on how the policy is structured, can prevent them from having to pay for medical expenses up front and submit a claim later. At the same time, travelers should be aware that many policies preclude coverage for incidents in which a traveler was found to be over the legal intoxication limit.

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