SAN YSIDRO, Calif. — Hundreds of American tourists who were stranded in Cabo San Lucas by Hurricane Odile were flown north to Tijuana and trucked to the U.S.-Mexican border by the Mexican military Tuesday.
Amy Rubin, who was visiting Cabo from Maryland, along with a group of returning tourists were flown on military planes from Cabo San Lucas to Tijuana. Military trucks brought them from the Tijuana airport to the San Ysidro border crossing.
“It was terrifying, we had flights scheduled to at 3 o’clock on Sunday that were canceled so we got a hotel at the Best Western and just hunkered down for the night, it was terrifying,” said Rubin.
Hurricane Odile was blamed for flights out of Cabo San Lucas getting canceled Sunday. The airport was heavily damaged during the storm, and commercial flights have not resumed.
“The airport is destroyed, completely destroyed, we just raided a convenient store and got along and we did the best that we could do,” Rubin said.
The bedraggled Americans, many of whom had spent the last few days without electricity or running water in the hard-hit resort at the tip of Baja California, began crossing through the port of entry at about 12 p.m.
After crossing back into the U.S., it was up to each group of travelers to arrange transportation back home.
The “Los Cabos International Airport,” will remain closed until September 19 according to some reports, depending on the time it takes for clean-up.
San Diego resident Aldo Boccaccio used to live near the affected area in La Paz, Mexico. He said many of his family members are in Cabo San Lucus, where the storm hit.
All forms of communication Boccaccio are down, he was only able to get in contact with one cousin.
“She said ‘I have never lived through anything like this before. We were very afraid. We didn’t sleep all night … we were just working all night trying to get water out of the windows and the doors. Everyone okay, but we do see a lot of damage,'” said Boccaccio.