by Donald Wood
Last updated: 10:52 PM ET, Mon September 11, 2017
As Tropical Storm Irma continues to make its way through the United States, several popular resort beaches in Mexico have been red flagged or closed for at least 24 hours due to the effects of the storm.
According to Riviera Maya News, the increased wave size due to a phenomenon known as 'mar de fondo', which literally translates as 'background sea' or 'swell' has caused officials along the coastline of Yucatan and Quintana Roo to red flag the beaches from Cancun to Playa del Carmen.
Mar de fondo is the movement of waves from a storm system to locations far from their origin point, which explains how Irma's effects could lead to increased wave size hundreds of kilometres away in Mexico.
Authorities in Mexico are reporting waves washing ashore that are now impacting beach-side restaurants, businesses and parking lots. State Coordination of Civil Protection head Adrian Martinez Ortega told local media that many of the beaches in the northern zone of Quintana Roo have also been closed to ensure the safety of beachgoers.
The closures were issued Sunday and were scheduled to last at least 24 hours. Visitors have been asked to comply with the instructions and not return to the beaches until the authorities officially reopen them.
Areas currently dealing with restricted beach access include Isla Mujeres, Lazaro Cardenas, Solidaridad and more, with the ferry dock of Puerto Juarez also being suspended due to the strong waves. It will reopen when the waves subside.
The State Civil Protection is also warning people living or visiting resorts along the coast to avoid the beach, as the waves are potentially dangerous. Boats under 40 feet have also been restricted from all water activities.
Topics From This Article to Explore