Cabo authorities decided to force local businesses to close their doors indefinitely starting Tuesday night. The closure mandate is expected to last at least a couple of days until hurricane Kay is no longer threatening Cabo shores. The news about stores being forced to close, and the imminent arrival of the hurricane sparked panic buying sprees across multiple stores in Los Cabos and other nearby cities.
In Cabo San Lucas multiple shopping centers reported long lines at register counters. Also, there were reports that most of the products that people were buying weren’t necessarily “basic goods”. Instead, people were stocking up on chips, and junk food in general. Before Tuesday’s ban many people headed to local supermarkets to stock up on alcoholic beverages as well. The sale of alcohol in the region was formally banned on Tuesday night, however certain hotels have continued providing drinks to guests from their previously acquired stock.
Which Businesses Were Forced To Close & What Will Remain Open
As previously stated local authorities enforced a business closure mandate that essentially included all sorts of business, such as restaurants, entertainment centers, and even factories that produce non-essential goods. The closure mandate itself was quite vague, but it did specify that the only business that could remain open included pharmacies, and “specialty stores”.
At the time of writing virtually all of the supermarkets in the region are operating normally. In many cases they even continue offering their services in their normal operating hours. For many stores this means staying open until 11pm. Past that time it’s going to be hard to find a store open other than a pharmacy that is open 24 hours a day. The situation could change over the next few hours. It’s recommended that both tourists and locals verify that the store they are trying to get to is in fact open before they make their way towards it. This site monitors which local stores are currently open. It also features the phone number for local supermarkets to help locals and tourists verify whether the store is effectively open or not.
According to this information many of the OXXO stores, and some of the other chains that primarily sell alcoholic drinks have been closed down due to the current situation. Again, most supermarkets are operating as usual, with the only restriction being that alcohol sales continue to be banned.
With regard to panic purchases recently the governor of the state of Baja California Sur Víctor Castro Cosío urged both tourists and locals to remain calm. The governor mentioned that there were plenty of supplies and goods to allow the people in the region to weather the storm. At the time of writing local stores have not reported shortages of any essential goods in the region.
The Situation Could Change Over The Next Few Hours or Days
The closure of businesses besides those that sell products that are considered basic needs is part of the state of Baja California Sur’s yellow warning level for natural disasters. At this point in time, local authorities have not indicated whether they intend to increase the warning level in the coming hours. If things escalate further, and a red alert is declared, basically what would change is that the city would go into full lock down mode.
With hurricane Lorena in 2019 a red alert level was imposed on the population. The main difference between then, and the current situation is that currently people can still roam the streets at their own risk. There have been certain road closures due to flooding some of which have remained closed since tropical storm Javier hit last week. Other than that, schools, and businesses have already closed down because of hurricane Kay just like we saw in 2019.