A strong storm struck Guadalajara, Jalisco, yesterday producing flash flooding that affected several parts of the city, including the light rail system from which scores of people had to be rescued.
Water up to four meters deep flooded the Dermatológico station on line 1 and trapped about 40 people inside the carriages of a stationary train.
Civil Protection personnel, firefighters and local residents all contributed to the rescue efforts.
In a video that was live-streamed on Facebook by one stranded passenger, people could be seen waist-deep in water and a distressed baby can be heard crying. In another video, passengers were attempting to swim to safety.
Authorities said that none of the affected passengers was injured but one person who showed signs of hypothermia received medical treatment.
Through the formation of a human chain, another rescue operation saved a man who was swept away by flood waters in the Nueva España neighborhood.
Elsewhere in the city, a canal running parallel to Patria Avenue in Zapopan overflowed and flooded the thoroughfare between the Américas and Acueducto avenues.
Several cars were left stranded in the floodwaters, according to social media posts.
Transportation authorities said that several other roads in the city were affected by the heavy rains including the tunnel on Washington avenue, Federalismo avenue and the city’s Periférico, or ring road, between Melchor Ocampo and Pino Suárez streets.
Fallen trees also blocked Vallarta avenue in both directions between Rafael Sanzio and Independencia streets and shut down other roads in the Jalisco capital.
Shoppers in the Plaza Patria mall — located about 10 kilometers north of the city’s downtown — were forced to take shelter on the upper levels of the shopping center after its ground floor was inundated. Cars in the mall’s parking lot were also affected by the rapidly rising floodwaters.
Water was reported inside the Zoquipan and Zapopan hospitals, while the city’s Dermatological hospital also sustained damage.
Jalisco Governor Aristóteles Sandoval wrote on Twitter last night that there were no reports of injuries from the flooding and that Civil Protection services in all the municipalities of the Guadalajara metropolitan area were involved in clean-up efforts.