Sinaloa Slammed With Tropical Storm

Family member of GCC student provides details of the situation on the ground


Courtesy Photo / Mexico News Daily

Storm damage in has left many people homeless and wandering the streets.

Federal officials in Mexico declared a state of emergency for 11 municipalities in the state of Sinaloa, as an unexpected storm hit the territory on Sept. 20. Four people were killed as a result and three others are missing, and are yet to be found.

The heavy rainfall was due to a tropical depression, which “forms when a low pressure area is accompanied by thunderstorms that produce a circular wind flow with maximum sustained winds below 39 mph,” according to NASA.

Though not many U.S.-based media outlets have covered the disaster in Mexico, El Vaquero’s staff deemed it important to report about the unfortunate events, as Glendale Community College is home to many Mexican students with roots from Sinaloa. 

The aunt of a GCC student and newspaper staff member provided insight on the conditions on ground in a lengthy interview.

Margarita Carranco Gonzalez and her family live in the small town of Rafael Buelna in central Sinaloa, and though this town hasn’t suffered as poorly as some other parts of the state have, people still express their concern over what is to come.

The Gonzalez family home did not suffer from too many damages, though they have not had any running or drinking water in their city for days. The state has yet to fix the problem. Gonzalez said she has donated items like kitchen utensils, along with food to families who have lost their all to the horrific storm. Her family has also volunteered to help clean the houses of those affected by the storm. 

“We are in the mood to help with collecting food, clothing and cleaning houses,” she said in an interview, demonstrating optimism despite concern about clean up efforts.

However, Gonzalez added that little help has been received from the government. The most active aid was executed by the Mexico’s navy. reported that 14 inches of rain fell in less than a 24-hour period, destroying more than 300,000 homes. The Mexican Ministry of Agriculture estimated that  nearly 15,000 hectares of agricultural crops in Sinaloa were completely lost and that there were partial losses in an additional 1,920 hectares as a result of the heavy rainstorms.

Flooding also caused damage to three major highways, and 160 public schools.

Later in the week, the state government reported that at least 3,504 people had to be evacuated from their homes.

Shelters have been set up in several safe areas to receive and take care of those who were forced to leave their homes. The Mexican Red Cross has sent over 30 tons of humanitarian aid to help the state.