March 1, 2011
The Texas Department of Public Safety is urging all Texas Spring Breakers to avoid traveling to Mexico.
The U.S. State Department web site lists several travel alerts related to violence in Mexico. Travelers should always check that web site for the most up-to-date information related to security issues in Mexico. (See http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_970.html).
The official notice from the Texas Department of Public Safety:
March 1, 2011
DPS discourages Spring Break travel to Mexico
Reminds boaters of dangers on Falcon Lake
The Texas Department of Public Safety is urging Spring Breakers to avoid traveling to Mexico because of continued violence—and reminding boaters to stay on the U.S. side of Falcon Lake.
Falcon Lake has been the scene of several robberies and a U.S. citizen’s murder, and DPS is again warning boaters to steer clear of the Mexican side of the lake. Cartel activity remains high in that area.
“While drug cartel violence is most severe in northern Mexico, it is prominent in other parts of the country as well,” said DPS Director Steven C. McCraw. “Various crime problems also exist in many popular resort areas, such as Acapulco and Cancun, and crimes against U.S citizens often go unpunished.”
So far this year, an ICE agent was killed and another injured in a suspected ambush near San Luis Potosi February 15. Two El Paso teens were gunned down February 5 in Ciudad Juarez. In January, a Texas missionary was shot in the head when she and her husband ran an illegal road block in Nuevo Leon.
In addition to U.S citizens killed so far this year, preliminary figures show as many as 65 Americans were killed in Mexico in 2010. Kidnapping, sexual assault, robbery and carjacking also are threats in parts of Mexico. Suspects have not been prosecuted in many of the cases. Meanwhile, more than 30,000 Mexican citizens have died in drug-related violence since 2006, and the violence shows no signs of abating
“Drug violence has not discriminated—innocent bystanders and people who may have been in the wrong place at the wrong time are among the casualties. Underestimating the violence in Mexico would be a mistake for parents and students,” said McCraw. “Our safety message is simple: avoid traveling to Mexico during Spring Break and stay alive.”
DPS acknowledges that many travel to Mexico without incident, but the risks cannot be ignored. Travelers are encouraged to carefully research any planned trips.
Travelers should always check the U.S. State Department website for the most up-to-date information related to security issues in Mexico. (See http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_970.html or http://mexico.usembassy.gov/eng/eacs_MexicoSecurityUpdate.html.)
U.S. citizens living or traveling in Mexico are urged to register with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate through their website at https://travelregistration.state.gov/ibrs/ui/.
The DPS is offering these tips for a safe Spring Break:
- Don’t text while driving.
- Wear your seat belt.
- Don’t drink and drive.
- Find a sober friend to do the driving.
- Don’t leave your drink unattended, and don’t accept drinks from strangers.
- Keep a fresh driver behind the wheel, or stop every couple of hours to rest and walk around.
- Make sure your vehicle is properly maintained.
- Keep your friends close.