Cuenca News

Anniversary of Cuenca air disaster, Taxi union wants fare increase, Venezuelans vote, Fatal bus accident

Domingo – 16/7/2017

Hola, Todos –

Pagina cultural –

Sunday’s agenda events –

Exposición Fotografía Creativa – A photo exhibit of work produced by students in the “Taller de Fotografía Creativa” (Creative Photography Workshop) opened Sunday in the ex Escuela Central (Gran Colombia y Benigno Malo) <The Museo de la Ciudad. Have no idea why the writer is going back to the old Central School name.> The show will run for one week.

Articles about –

El Café del Parque – This family owned restaurant has its own “periodico” (newspaper) <Now that should have been a no brainer or did you really never know what the title of this column meant?> The paper, printed in an antique style, contains the menu as well as items about the politics and society of the city and country. The writing is “con tinte medio crítico y jocoso” (has a more or less critical and joking tinge) <snarky – only in Spanish.> The original location is on Benigno Malo y Bolívar with a second location in the redondel del Estadio which has been open a couple of months.

Caricature and drawing class – An intensive drawing class will start este lunes, 17/7. The class will have 5 sessions M-F, with classes starting a las 10, 16, & 18:00 in “El lobo hambriento” (Miguel Cordero Crespo y Boyacá). Call 098 404 4063 or 099 817 2816 for more info. Cost: $20.00.

Concierto – The Quinteto del Recuerdo (The Quintet of Memory) which formed in 1983, will perform on jueves, 27/7 a las 20:00 in the Teatro Pumapungo. The vocal group will play traditional “Música del Corazón” (Music of the Heart) such as milonga, vals, bolero, pasacalle, tango, pasillos, pasodobles and more. The group is also releasing its 5th CD. <A good place to further your musical education?) Cost: $12.00.

Colonias Vacacionales – “Verano Feliz” (Happy Summer) <Even though we’re heading into winter climatically.> day camps will start in several centros culturales este lunes as well as in several urban and rural barrios. Activities will be in the areas of art, culture and sports.

Otras cosas –

Titular – Oposición mide fuerzas con Maduro (Opposition measures forces against Maduro) – The opposition in Venezuela is calling for a referendum on the constitutional process initiated by the Government. The referendum has the support of the Parliament which has invoked the constitutional right of disobedience when the Gov’t “atropella” (runs over) <You see this word in traffic accident articles as well.) democracy. The unofficial referendum is today. There is also an election simulation today in advance of the official elections on 30/7 which will elect a new Assembly <I think>.

Fatal bus accident – 14 passengers were killed and another 30 injured in a bus accident on the vía Aloág-Santo Domingo on la “noche de viernes.” According to preliminary information, the bus “tuvo un impacto” (had an impact) with another smaller vehicle <Notice that neither vehicle hit the other – at least not yet.>, lost control, overturned and burned with passengers trapped inside. The bus’s operating permit was expired and the driver had 52 traffic infractions between 2011 and 2013 before the point system was put in place. The director of ANT said that “Eso no quiere decir que debía estar al volante” (That does not mean he should have been behind the wheel.) and that ANT will announce immediate actions and legal reforms to prevent people with a history of irresponsibility from having citizens’ lives in their hands. Operations of the La Maná bus cooperative have been indefinitely suspended until investigations are complete.

Taxi fares – AFUT, a 1200 member taxi union requested a revision of taxi fares. The fares were last revised in Sept. 2014.

Actualidades – Articles about –

Cometas (kites) – Kids are out of school, and the weather is sunny, cold and windy. It’s kite season. <So go fly a kite.>

Tragedia – Mañana, 17/7 is the anniversary of an air accident in 1946 that killed 30 passengers and crew of an Andesa flight on the Quito-Guayaquil-Cuenca route. There were two survivors. These flights were on los miércoles every week. The plane got to the “campo de aviación” (air field), but halfway down the runway, for unknown reasons, it still hadn’t landed. It was directed to fly over San Blas and Todos Santos towards the “Campo Deportivo” (Sports Field, now the stadium). It hit trees and crashed where the Supermaxi “El Vergel” now is, in the sector “El Ejido.” <I wonder if Andesa was the precursor to TAME?)

Interview – María Rosa Crespo was interviewed. She is a professor and researcher (fiestas, rites, gastronomy, oral tradition, semiotics, etc.)

Eduardo Vega Malo – The internationally known ceramicist has his home and studio on the vía a Turi 201. <Now here’s a tidbit for you trivia buffs.> The artist’s grandfather brought the first car to Cuenca in 1912. It was a Clément Bayard, bought in Paris. The car was transported with the help of “guanderos” (litter bearers). <Remember that there was no highway between Cuenca and Guayaquil then. Maybe not even a paved road. Put the car in neutral and drag it up the mountain with horses or oxen?>

Discuentos y compras –

Gualaquiza – celebrating something from 28/7 to 16/8: viernes, 28/7 – Presenting the Queen of Gualaquiza candidates; 30/7 – Cross Country Championships, freestyle 3×3 Basketball Championships; 3/8 – Night of tradition and culture; 5/8 – Bike ride, 4×4 contest <wheelies?>, elections for shuar and meztiza queens; 10/8 – Bocydium Festival <It’s a rare insect. You have your choice of grilled or fried – but only cooked 1/4.>; 11/8 – Cuy, tourist and gastronomic feria, 80’s & 90’s concert; 12/8 – Agricultural Festival; 13/8 – Motocross race; 16/8 – Parade, solemn session, pro-football, noche gualaquicense.

And that´s all for today so Hasta Mañana –

Jeanne

  • Dogoslave

    14 dead, 30 injured, expired operating permit and bus driver with 52 traffic infractions. Isn’t ANT suppose to monitor bus permits and driver records for the safety of the traveling public. Just another EC bureaucracy doing a stellar job, as usual. What’s the odds anybody La Mana goes to jail?

    • Michael Berger

      If they ran across this reckless driver on at least 52 occasions
      where they filled out paperwork then you really gotta wonder how many incidents
      were never recorded because the police were paid off. Considering their salaries start at 3 times the minimum wage and go up over 10 times the minimum wage you think they could manage to get by without taking bribes from drivers like this.

      The purpose of the ANT(National Transit Agency or Transit Police) is to conduct random warrant-less searches, harass honest law abiding individuals and collect taxes (commonly referred to as fines). That is why they will sit in their vehicles and ignore all kinds of reckless driving including people running red lights but when you least expect it a group of Nazis will be blocking the road ready to give you a hefty fine for something mundane like not having a spare tire or a fire extinguisher.

  • Mel Layton

    Where exactly is vía Aloág-Santo Domingo? I have been on 2 buses that were so scary that I got off as soon as possible.

    • guest

      Route 20 south and west of Quito toward the coast. Good move on getting off the bus. Craziest bus ride I have ever had, and the most dangerous.

    • Dogoslave

      Not many options for those that don’t own cars. Most inter-canton travel requires taking a bus, which in turn, requires taking risks. Besides lousy bus drivers, there’s the opportunistic thieves onboard waiting to steal your belongings. Add in the nasty restroom, blaring music, general stench of the entire environment and you’ll probably skip any future bus travel. Pretty soon, you’ll start feeling stuck, then angry.

      • Karen Lynn Kennedy

        And you should have been around here 30 years ago!!!…my night ride to Quito to go to the Ministerio del Exterior (Ministry of the Exterior) the next day to have my residency papers “recorded” was as close as I ever want to get to hell!! Tho’ it may not seem like it, the ANT has managed to bring about a few (maybe not enough) changes in all this time. When I travel to Guayaquil, I have a private driver, and if by odd chance my flight leaves from Quito, I fly there. What I find so shocking is that the people responsible for the accident didn’t renew their permit…and they can’t say they didn’t know it was expired. Did the driver get burned or did he flee the scene?

      • Jason Faulkner

        Your bus had a restroom? I’ve traveled the length and breadth of this country by bus and every single one of them, without exception, was out of order.

        They really should have someone regulate the movies that are shown. I was on a bus from Quito to Tena and they were showing some movie about some civil war in Africa. In the middle was a 5-minute scene where some poor woman was being brutally raped followed by several scenes of children begging for their lives before being shot in the head. Of course they had it at full volume so even with my headphones on I couldn’t block it out. As one who has worked in war zones in Africa, it’s safe to say I found it very unsettling. I can only imagine the effect on some veteran from Iraq or Afghanistan who thought a vacation in Ecuador might be good for his PTSD only to end up stuck on one of those buses for hours.

    • Karen Lynn Kennedy

      It’s up north…on the way to Esmeraldas which is a coastal town.

  • guest

    Definitely a tragedy. So what is new? I have been watching the same stuff go on for over six years and it doesn’t get better, maybe worse. How do you teach a longo to take his foot off the accelerator and drive defensively? You don’t! It is part of the need for little men to feel like they are big men.
    Crispy dead children and poor adults, ahh, so what. the smell will go away with time. It is certain that the government could care less about enforcing safety rules, that might require spending some of the outrageous taxes that is charged for motor vehicles, road use, licenses, and whatever else they can thank of to shake down the public.
    Vehicle safety is an oxymoron here in the land of “everything perfect!”
    God forbid they ever let these idiots start flying planes.

    • Pixelvt

      Apparently they already have at Tame. But when they leave Tame the take Tranvia driver education, look out Cuenca LOL

      I would never take a bus in Ecuador other than around town, period.

  • Sharon

    Main reason I fly vs. hiring a driver from Cuenca connecting in Quito or Guayaquil to fly to the USA, Air travel is always safer especially in this country.
    While people frequently hire safe, trusted drivers to drive from Cuenca to Guayaquil for flights, there are still the many crazy buses that have a history of safety problems, crashes, hijackings etc…crashing into safely driven cars. Air travel is always safer.

    • Jason Faulkner

      Statistically speaking, the most dangerous part of air travel is driving to the airport.

  • Mac McGinty

    plenty of laws with virtually Zero enforcement=Tragedy. this wasn’t an accident, it was a disaster waiting to happen!!

  • Jason Faulkner

    So what happened with the new highway patrol that went into effect last year? I saw them all over the place for the first few months, especially on the Cuenca-Guayaquil highway through the Cajas, but I don’t remember seeing any of their cruisers on the highways anywhere this year. Did they quietly scrap it?

    • Michael Berger

      I don’t know, there were about 8 police agencies in Cuenca when I got here and since then they have added about three more. With so many different uniforms to keep track of one police branch could disappear completely without being missed.

      • Jason Faulkner

        The Highway Patrol worked the interparish roads in between cities. They really need to step up that program. I travel a lot by bus in this country and some of the drivers have no business on the road.