CFE Braces for Hurricane Grace LandfallBy Cinthya Alaniz Salazar | Fri, 08/20/2021 - 08:57
The Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) equipped and deployed more than a thousand electrical workers to the Yucatan Peninsula in order to mitigate any possible energy infrastructure damages incurred by Category 1 Hurricane Grace which made landfall early yesterday morning.
A bulletin by the state agency detailed it had sent 1,224 employees, 239 cranes, 339 vehicles, 69 emergency plants and a helicopter to Tulum where the hurricane was expected to make contact.
Preparations for this storm follows after Hurricane Linda, category two hurricane, devastated the energy grid in Mexicali, Baja California, after knocking out two energy towers last week that left several thousand people and businesses without energy. Despite CFE’s efforts, on Tuesday some 15,000 people and numerous businesses remained without electricity amid a triple digit heatwave.
At a state level, hotels in Quintana Roo were evacuated beforehand and shelters were opened for people to take refuge. Some airlines cancelled flights to the popular tourist center whilst local authorities ordered people to stay indoors and all business to close by 8 p.m. .
After gaining strength over the past day, at around 4:45 a.m. local time, hurricane Grace came ashore south of Tulum with 80mph winds, notified the National Hurricane Center (NHC). Quintana Roo Governor Carlos Joaquin said the storm had knocked out power to some 84,000 residents in Cancun and another 65,000 in Playa del Carmen, Cozumel, Puerto Aventura and Tulum.
Although Grace was reduced to a tropical storm after moving across the Yucatan Peninsula, its forecasted to regain strength in the Gulf of Mexico before making a second landfall in central Mexico tomorrow according to the NHC. After final landfall in mainland Mexico, rainfall could reach 15 inches, most likely causing flash flooding and mudslides. From there, “Grace should quickly weaken and dissipate over the mountains of Mexico by 72 hours, if not sooner," reported hurricane center. As of this morning, CFE has not mentioned pivoting from the Yucatan Peninsula to central Mexico.