NORTH TEXAS (CBS 11 NEWS) – It’s four days since a hurricane hit the Mexican Pacific Coast resort town of Cabo San Lucas; but some North Texans are still stranded in the Baja California peninsula. There are reports of looting and police losing control.
The situation has led to some anxious moments for Burleson couple Karen and Norber Fox. Their son and his wife are stranded on what was supposed to be a dream trip.
“They are in a dire situation,” explained Karen. “Very little food and water. They’re in a group of thousands of people that are desperate.”
Their son, Garrett, and his wife Katie, took a belated 10th anniversary vacation, renting a villa with five other couples. They rode out the hurricane safely, but the villa and city were left in ruins.
“The thing is they’re hearing so many reports of looting and atrocious things to Americans over there. They’ve even thought about driving to Tijuana, but we’ve heard about kidnappings and horrible situations. And they absolutely cannot do that.”
The family has been communicating mostly through text messages.
The Fox party made its way to La Paz, hearing the airport there was open; it wasn’t. Calls to Mexican and U.S. government officials were frustrating. “Our government… I haven’t seen it do anything yet,” Karen Fox told CBS 11 News.
Norbert Fox agreed. “Mostly what we’ve gotten from them is, ‘We’re watching it. We’re watching the situation. No plans to do anything but we’re aware. We’re watching.’ That’s what they’re saying.”
Late Thursday the combined families took dramatic personal action. Parents of the six couples pooled their resources and hired a jet to fly their children to San Diego. It cost them $17,000. They were airborne late Thursday.
“There’s another hurricane on the way, or more storms on the way,” Karen said. “If they don’t get them out now — and you’re talking about thousands and thousands of people in that situation — it’s going to get more desperate.”
Ken Jenkins is an emergency response consultant to air carriers and worked for American Airlines for 26 years. He says Mexico is letting some humanitarian flights in.
“So American [Airlines] is positioning five of its humanitarian flights at this time to bring people out; they’re not flying in but they’ll be able to lift people out of the Cabo area.”
According to Jenkins, this is part of an established contingency plan.
“Today is the first day they’ll fly what they call extra sections, if you will, of flights leaving. And there may be extra flights tomorrow as well.”
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