Water is rationed for 30,000 customers; Covid tests are in short supply; New year brings rash of fatal accidents; New landslide closes Cajas highway
Hola, Todos –
Titular – Créditos para reactivar (Loans for reactivation) – Pres. Lasso launched his plan of Crédito de las Oportunidades in Latacunga, Cotopaxi ayer. He presented a symbolic check for $3,000 to María Rosa Quindil, a small agricultural producer. See today’s article in CHL for more information.
Escasean pruebas en Cuenca (Tests getting scarce in Cuenca) – Given the scarcity of Covid tests across the world, Ximena Garzón, ministra de Salud, announced that people getting tested in the public health system need to exhibit symptoms and get a medical evaluation first. However, people can get tests privately without these requirements.
Private labs, too, are feeling the consequences of this global shortage. César Gallegos, owner/manager of Neolab, said that there was an over-demand during the first days of enero relative to the detection of the virus. They depend on their providers, Roche Diagnostics and Siemens, and underestimated demand in 2021 so they don’t have antigen or rapid tests for outpatient clinic patients except for those labs that bought tests from Asia. He is hoping that a purchase made in 2021 will arrive this viernes. Neolab still has about 1,000 PCR tests which can also identify influenza A & B for the set price of $40. They can give you results via email in 45-60 minutes for the antigen test, and in 4-5 hours for the PCR. The results are sent with a QR or bar code to avoid falsifications as happened in 2021. <So how come the clinics in western Colorado couldn’t provide results faster than a 3-5 day window?> He recommended waiting for at least 72 hours after getting exposed to Covid before getting a test, and continuing with biosafety the measures of hand disinfecting, social distancing and above all, wearing a mask.
Racionamiento de agua (Water rationing) – Due to the lack of rain, the Junta Administradora de Agua Potable (JAAP) Proyecto Nero announced water shut-offs to about 30,000 people in the parishes of Turi, Baños, El Valle & Padccha until next miércoles. Consumers are asked to use what is necessary for domestic use. Washing vehicles and irrigation are prohibited. The water will be on from 5-14:00 in the communities of San Antonio de Gapal, San Francisco, Cuatro Esquinas, San José la Playa, San Juan Loma, El Despacho, Santa Catalina, Victoria Alta, Victoria Centro, Victoria Baja, Poloma, Quillopungo, Santa Martha, Primero de Enero, Castilla Cruz, and Barrio Unido. Meanwhile, from 8-16:00 water service will be suspended in the Los Laureles, Señor del Cautivo, El Calvario, El Cisne, Corazón de Jesús Turi, Santa Anita, Tres Clavales, Punta Corral, Trinidad, Bellavista, Hierba Buena, Gualalcay, centro parroquial de Turi, Asunción, Rayoloma, Guncay, Carmen de Baguanchi, Baguanchi Cedillo, Tierras Coloradas & San Pedro de Baguanchi sectors.
ETAPA, the Municipal water, sewer and telecommunications company of Cuenca, said that for now, no water rationing is planned, but it is asking its ratepayers to save water. <So give up those 30 minute showers until the rains come again.> Milton Menítez, head of the Secretaria de Gestión de Riesgos y Emergencias (SGRE – Secretariat of Risk Management and Emergencies) said that the phenomena of La Niña will be accentuated. La Niña is marked by a lack of rain and droughts, especially in cantons such as Nabón, Oña, Pucará, Santa Isabel, Girón & Cañar.
Vuelco de camión se deja una víctima (Truck overturn leaves one victim) – A woman died, and 3 children were injured when a truck overturned at km. 78 on the vía Cuenca-Loja ayer around 9:00. Over the last weekend, two motorcyclists were killed in two accidents. The first was on the vía Cuenca-Molleturo and the second on the vía to the Barabón sector in San Joaquín. El último martes, 5 people were injured in a frontal collision between two private cars on km. 22 of the vía Cuenca-Girón-Pasaje in the Victoria del Portete parish. On the same martes, 3 people were killed and 18 injured when a public bus covering the Loja-Macará route overturned on the vía Loja-Catamayo. The prosecutor’s office has opened an investigation into alleged wrongful death. The bus driver fled the scene. <Unfortunately, getting back to normal seems to include more bus accidents. There has to be something systemically wrong for there to be so many buses perdiendo pista and turning over.>
Derrumbe en vía (Landslide on road) – There was a rock slide at km. 90.3 on the vía Cuenca-Molleturo-El Empalme yesterday which caused a short suspension of traffic until the road could be cleared. The slide was at a point where Asfaltar EP, a Province of Azuay business, was contracted to perform maintenance work.
And that´s all for today so Hasta ? –