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PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENTS

Matamoros Travel Alert June 15, 2010

MEXICO

Travel Alert -Hurricane Season 2010

The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to the Hurricane Season in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, the Caribbean, and the Gulf of Mexico. The official Atlantic Hurricane Season runs from June through November. This Travel Alert expires on December 11, 2010.

National Weather Service officials at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predict a 70 percent probability of the following ranges: fourteen to twenty-three named storms, with eight to fourteen becoming hurricanes, and three to seven becoming major hurricanes. NOAA recommends that those in hurricane-prone regions begin preparations for the upcoming season now.

In the aftermath of some previous storms, U.S. citizens traveling abroad have encountered uncomfortable and often dangerous conditions that have lasted for several days while awaiting transportation back to the United States.  In the past, many U.S. citizens have been forced to delay travel due to infrastructure damage to airports and limited flight availability.  Roads were also washed out or obstructed by debris, adversely affecting access to airports and land routes out of affected areas.  Reports of looting and sporadic violence in the aftermath of natural disasters are not uncommon. Security personnel may not be readily available to assist at all times.  In the event of a hurricane, travelers should be aware that they may not be able to depart the area for 24-48 hours or longer.

Should a situation require an evacuation from an overseas location, the State Department will work with commercial airlines to ensure that U.S. citizens are repatriated as safely and efficiently as possible. Commercial airlines are the Department's primary source of transportation in an evacuation; other means of transport are utilized only as a last resort. The Department of State will not provide no-cost transportation, but does have the authority to provide repatriation loans to those in financial need.  U.S. citizens should obtain travel insurance to cover unexpected expenses during an emergency.

U.S. citizens living in or traveling to storm-prone regions overseas can prepare for hurricanes and tropical storms by organizing a kit in a waterproof container that includes a supply of bottled water, non-perishable food items, a battery-powered or hand-crank radio, and vital documents (especially passport and other identification).  Emergency shelters often provide only very basic resources and may have limited medical and food supplies.

U.S. citizens should monitor local radio, local media, and the National Weather Service to stay aware of area weather developments.  Minor tropical storms can develop into hurricanes very quickly, limiting the time available for a safe evacuation.  Travelers should apprise family and friends of their whereabouts and remain in close contact with their tour operators, hotel staff, and local officials for evacuation instructions in a weather emergency.

U.S. citizens are strongly encouraged to register with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate through the Department of State's travel registration website.  By registering, American citizens can receive the Embassy's most recent security and safety updates during their trip. Registration also ensures that U.S. citizens can be reached should an emergency arise either abroad or at home.  While consular officers will do their utmost to assist U.S citizens in a crisis, travelers always should be aware that local authorities bear primary responsibility for the welfare of people living or traveling in their jurisdictions.

Additional information on hurricanes and storm preparedness may be found on the Bureau of Consular Affairs' Hurricane Season 2010 webpage and on the "Hurricane Season - Know Before You Go" webpage. Updated information on travel in the Caribbean may be obtained from the Department of State by calling 1-888-407-4747 within the United States and Canada or, from outside the United States and Canada, 1-202-501-4444.  Travelers to the region are encouraged to check the Internet site of the U.S. Embassy or Consulate with consular responsibilities for the territory they will be visiting. For further information please consult the Country Specific Information Sheet for the country or territory in question.

Further Information

Listed below are local Mexican agencies which may provide assistance to U.S. citizens in the event a hurricane occurs near the area. In the event you are located in an area not mentioned below that is affected by a hurricane you can contact the nearest Protección Civil office (Civil Protection Agency). They may be able to refer you to other offices in the area that can assist.

Matamoros:

-Guarnición Militar de la Plaza (local Army).- 01 (868) 816-5480/7446

-Subsector Naval (local Navy).- 01 (868) 822-9502

-Angeles Verdes (road side-assistance).- 01 (868) 813-9154

-Centro de Salud (health center).- 01 (868) 819-1620

-Albergues (shelters).- 01 (868) 817-0729

-Albergue Casa del Migrante "San Juan Diego" (shelter).- 01 (868) 822-4689/2213

-Ozanam Center-Brownsville (shelter in Brownsville, TX).- 001 (956) 831-6331/4791

-Dirección General del Protección Civil y Bomberos (Civil Protection Agency and Fire

 Department).- 01 (868) 824-4721/4722

-Hospital General "Dr. Alfredo Pumarejo" (hospital).- 01 (868) 816-1712

-Cruz Roja (hospital).- 01 (868) 812-0044/816-6562/822-2543

-Cruz Verde (hospital).- 001 (868) 817-0287

Reynosa:

-Guarnición Militar de la Plaza (local Army).- 01 (899) 926-7092

-Albergues (shelters).- 01 (899) 922-4268/4555

-Centro de Salud (health center).- 01 (868) 925-0560

-Protección Civil  y Heroico Cuerpo de Bomberos Centro Hidalgo (Civil Protection Agency and

 Fire Department).- 01 (899) 263-3580/81

-Hospital General (hospital0.- 01 (899) 926-3104/05/06

-Cruz Roja (hospital).- 01 (899) 922-6250/1314

San Fernando:

- Protección Civil (Civil Protection Agency).- 01 (841) 852-3582

-Centro de Salud (health center).- 01 (841) 844-0496/1660

-Cruz Roja (hospital).- 01 (841) 844-1176

Soto La Marina:

-Subsector Naval (local Navy).- 01 (835) 327-0702/8617

- Protección Civil (Civil Protection Agency).- 01 (835) 322-1666

-Centro de Salud (health center).- 01 (835) 322-1740

-Hospital Oportunidades (hospital).- 01 (835) 327-0133

-Cruz Roja (hospital).- 01 (835) 327-1086

-Albergue Auditorio Municipal y Gimnasio Municipal (shelters).- 01 (835) 327-0490

La Pesca:

- Protección Civil (Civil Protection Agency).- 01 (835) 322-1666

-Subsector Naval (local Navy).- 01 (835) 327-0702/8617

-Albergue Auditorio Municipal y Gimnasio Municipal (shelters).- 01 (835) 327-0490

U.S. citizens are urged to monitor local media for information about fast-breaking situations that could affect their security.

U.S. citizens are encouraged to review the U.S. Embassy's Mexico Security Update. The update contains information about recent security incidents in Mexico that could affect the safety of the traveling public.   For more detailed information on staying safe in Mexico, please see the Mexico Country Specific Information.  Information on security and travel to popular tourist destinations is also provided in the publication: "Spring Break in Mexico- Know Before You Go!!"

For the latest security information, U.S. citizens traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department's Internet web site at http://travel.state.gov/ where the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, and Travel Alerts can be found. Up-to-date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the United States and Canada, or, for callers from Mexico, a regular toll line at 001-202-501-4444.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).  American citizens traveling or residing overseas are encouraged to register with the appropriate U.S. Embassy or Consulate on the State Department's travel registration website at https://travelregistration.state.gov/.

For any emergencies involving U.S. citizens in Mexico, please contact the U.S. Embassy or the closest U.S. Consulate.  The numbers provided below for the Embassy and Consulates are available around the clock.  The U.S. Embassy is located in Mexico City at Paseo de la Reforma 305, Colonia Cuauhtemoc, telephone from the United States: 011-52-55-5080-2000; telephone within Mexico City: 5080-2000; telephone long distance within Mexico 01-55-5080-2000.  You may also contact the Embassy by e-mail at: ACSMexicoCity@state.gov The Embassy's Internet address is http://www.usembassy-mexico.gov/.

Consulates (with consular districts):

Ciudad Juarez (Chihuahua): Paseo de la Victoria 3650, tel. (011)(52)(656) 227-3000. http://ciudadjuarez.usconsulate.gov/.

Guadalajara (Nayarit, Jalisco, Aguas Calientes, and Colima): Progreso 175, telephone (011)(52)(333) 268-2100. http://guadalajara.usconsulate.gov/.

Hermosillo (Sinaloa and the southern part of the state of Sonora): Avenida Monterrey 141, telephone (011)(52)(662) 289-3500. http://hermosillo.usconsulate.gov/.

Matamoros (the southern part of Tamaulipas with the exception of the city of Tampico): Avenida Primera 2002, telephone (011)(52)(868) 812-4402. http://matamoros.usconsulate.gov/.

Merida (Campeche, Yucatan, and Quintana Roo): Calle 60 no. 338-K x 29 y 31, Col. Alcala Martin, Merida, Yucatan, Mexico 97050, telephone (011)(52)(999) 942-5700 or 202-250-3711 (U.S. number). http://merida.usconsulate.gov/.

Monterrey (Nuevo Leon, Durango, Zacatecas, San Luis Potosi, and the southern part of Coahuila): Avenida Constitucion 411 Poniente, telephone (011)(52)(818) 047-3100. http://monterrey.usconsulate.gov/.

Nogales (the northern part of Sonora): Calle San Jose, Nogales, Sonora, telephone (011)(52)(631) 311-8150. http://nogales.usconsulate.gov/.

Nuevo Laredo (the northern part of Coahuila and the northwestern part of Tamaulipas): Calle Allende 3330, col. Jardin, telephone (011)(52)(867) 714-0512. http://nuevolaredo.usconsulate.gov/.

Tijuana (Baja California Norte and Baja California Sur): Tapachula 96, telephone (011)(52)(664) 622-7400. http://tijuana.usconsulate.gov/service.html.

All other Mexican states, and the Federal District of Mexico City, are part of the Embassy's consular district.

Consular Agencies:

Acapulco: Hotel Continental Emporio, Costera Miguel Aleman 121 - local 14, telephone (011)(52)(744) 484-0300 or (011)(52)(744) 469-0556.

Cabo San Lucas: Blvd. Marina local c-4, Plaza Nautica, col. Centro, telephone (011)(52)(624) 143-3566.

Cancún:  Plaza Caracol two, second level, no. 320-323, Boulevard Kukulcan, km. 8.5, Zona Hotelera, telephone (011)(52)(998) 883-0272 or,  202-640-2511 (a U.S. number).

Ciudad Acuña:  Closed until further notice.

Cozumel:  Plaza Villa Mar en el Centro, Plaza Principal, (Parque Juárez between Melgar and 5th ave.) 2nd floor, locales #8 and 9, telephone (011)(52)(987) 872-4574 or,  202-459-4661 (a U.S. number).

Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo:  Hotel Fontan, Blvd. Ixtapa, telephone (011)(52)(755) 553-2100.

Mazatlán:  Playa Gaviotas #202, Zona Dorada, telephone (011)(52)(669) 916-5889.

Oaxaca:  Macedonio Alcalá no. 407, interior 20, telephone (011)(52)(951) 514-3054, (011) (52)(951) 516-2853.

Piedras Negras: Abasolo #211, Zona Centro, Piedras Negras, Coah., Tel. (011)(52)(878) 782-5586.

Playa del Carmen:  "The Palapa,"  Calle 1 Sur, between Avenida 15 and Avenida 20, telephone (011)(52)(984) 873-0303 or 202-370-6708(a U.S. number).

Puerto Vallarta:  Paradise Plaza, Paseo de los Cocoteros #1, Local #4, Interior #17, Nuevo Vallarta, Nayarit, telephone (011)(52)(322) 222-0069.

Reynosa:  Calle Monterrey #390, Esq. Sinaloa, Colonia Rodríguez, telephone: (011)(52)(899) 923 - 9331.

San Luis Potosí:  Edificio "Las Terrazas", Avenida Venustiano Carranza 2076-41, Col. Polanco, telephone: (011)(52)(444) 811-7802/7803.

San Miguel de Allende:  Dr. Hernandez Macias #72, telephone (011)(52)(415) 152-2357 or (011)(52)(415) 152-0068.