Things That Matter

Freak Rollercoaster Accident In Mexico City Kills Two And Injured Dozens Others

A speeding rail car on a roller coaster flipped over mid-ride at the famous Mexican amusement park, “Feria de Chapultepec”,  last Saturday afternoon. The accident happened on the popular Chimera rollercoaster at the amusement park in Miguel Hidalgo, Mexico City.

According to SUUMA Voluntarios (Universitary System of Medical Urgent Care), two people were killed and three more were injured when the roller coaster jumped its track and plunged toward the ground. An additional six riders on the roller coaster were treated for shock

Mexico City’s attorney general’s office confirmed that two men, aged 18 and 21, died of head and other injuries when the last car on the ride derailed at La Feria. Two women were also hurt.  

A video shared on social media appears to show one of the carriages coming off the tracks.

Notimex reported that eyewitnesses told local media that the accident happened when the carriage hit a metal structure that was also part of the ride and the victims fell to the ground after the impact. Eyewitness Rosalba Rodríguez told reporters there was nothing out of the ordinary about the ride, which had completed a few loops, until she saw the last carriage fall.

The park was closed after the accident, and prosecutors are already investigating the cause, to find who was responsible.

The amusement park was closed soon after the incident, and authorities are investigating the cause of the accident. “This is now in the hands of prosecutors, and prosecutors have already taken the necessary steps for an investigation,” Miriam Urzúa, an official from the civil protection organization, told Reuters news agency. She said the investigation would be looking into both, what happened, and who was responsible. 

Ulises Lara López, spokesman for the citie’s attorney general’s office said that preliminary investigations indicate a mechanical failure caused the car to come loose and fall 10 meters (33 feet) above the ground. Authorities are treating the incident as a case of negligent homicide. 

The fair said it “deeply regrets the terrible accident” and that they too will investigate alongside the relevant authorities.

The message posted to the amusement park’s Facebook page, informed users that its priority is to offer all the support the victims and their families require at this time. “The safety of our visitors is a priority for La Feria de Chapultepec, which is why we will be suspending activities at the park, to provide the proper attention and follow up of protocols, safety measures and maintenance of our installations—which are routinely subjected to inspections of both national and international standards”. The park’s statement concluded by offering its “deepest condolences to [the] families [of those who died] and reiterate that they have all our support.”

The “Quimera” rollercoaster in Chapultepec Park, now “La Feria” can be spotted from afar in the capital. The ride features three nearly vertical yellow and red loops visible from major highway, Periférico. The decades old coaster, like many rides in La Feria, was featured at other parks around the world before finding a home in Mexico City. The tragic accident comes a few months after two were killed and dozens were injured when a swinging amusement park ride broke free and crashed to the ground in India in July.

While amusement park rides are generally safe, understanding the types of risks involved can further lower your odds of an accident.

According to the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions’ (IAAPA) yearly safety reports, 1.7 billion rides in the United States resulted in 1,343 injuries in 2008, of which 80 required overnight hospitalization. While amusement park rides are generally safe, understanding the types of risks involved can further lower your odds of an accident.

Mechanical failures are rare, thanks to the intense inspections that rides undergo. Nonetheless, if a ride looks rickety or unstable, or if any part of your seat seems loose or broken, skip the ride. Pay attention to signage and verbal instructions from the ride operator. Keep your feet on the floor, face forward with your head back against the headrest and stay fully seated. Brace yourself with your hands. Tie back long hair and place loose items in a locker.

Diego Luna Talks The Importance Of The Storytelling In ‘Narcos: Mexico’ And Why Mexico City Will Always Be His Home

Entertainment

Diego Luna Talks The Importance Of The Storytelling In ‘Narcos: Mexico’ And Why Mexico City Will Always Be His Home

Courtesy of Netflix

Netflix’s “Narcos: Mexico” Season 2 comes back to continue the story of enigmatic drug lord Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo and the subsequent rise and fall of the Guadalajara cartel he founded in the 1970s, with Diego Luna reprising his role as the mysterious Félix Gallardo.

The show depicts how Félix Gallardo’s eloquence and strategic thinking helped him attain a swift rise to the apex of the Mexican drug cartels. 

For a man of which not much is widely known about, Luna reveals in this exclusive interview with mitú how he was able to dive into his character.

When preparing for this role, Luna said there wasn’t as much research material about El Padrino (Félix Gallardo’s alias) compared to the personal stories of other real-life personalities, such as El Chapo. 

“The good thing for me in playing this role is this man was a very discreet person, he understood the power of discretion,” Luna says.

It was important to see what people said about him—what people say or feel when they were around this character, this perception of him helps a lot. I had to do research and see what was a common answer—people talk about how intelligent and precise and strategic he was, and that’s how I wanted to portray and build this character,” Luna told mitú over the phone. 

Season 2 picks up after the murder of DEA agent Kiki Camarena, with Félix Gallardo enjoying political protection at his palatial home in Mexico.

It’s evident in the beginning scenes of this second season that his rags-to-riches story is starting to unravel and a bit of paranoia is starting to set in that he may have a knife (or gun) at his back at any moment. 

A running allegory used by the characters’ dialogues of the Roman Empire’s eventual collapse and Julius Caesar’s ultimate end foreshadows what we all know will happen to Félix Gallardo—his drug empire will eventually collapse in a smoke of cocaine dust. 

From crooked Mexican politicians and cops to ranch hands trying to make extra money delivering cocaine across the border, the show demonstrates the complicity among the cartels and how far the cartels’ reach.

“Narcos: Mexico” attempts to show that good and evil isn’t always black and white. The story highlights the gray area where even those committing corrupt acts are victims, Luna explained. 

“Some of the characters that take action are victims of the whole system,” Luna said in Spanish. 

The side of Mexico shown in “Narcos: Mexico” has been criticized by some as a side of Mexico stereotypically seen in the media.

However, Luna sees it as a side of the country that is real and must be discussed in order to move forward.

“When this season ends, I was 10 to 11 years old [at the time.] That decade was actually ending. It’s interesting to revisit that decade as an adult and research that Mexico my father was trying to hide from me [as a child],” Luna explained.

Luna says that this type of storytelling is important to understanding the fuller picture of Mexico.

The need for this type of storytelling—the stories that put a mirror up to a country to see the darkest side of itself—is vital, regardless of how complex it is to write scripts about all the facets of a country marred by political and judicial corruption. 

“In this case the story is very complex, it’s talking about a corrupt system that allows these stories to happen. We don’t tell stories like that—we simply everything. With this, I had a chance to understand that complexity. The journey of this character is a presentable journey. Power has a downside, and he gets there and he thinks he’s indispensable and clearly he is not,” Luna said. 

Outside of his role on “Narcos,” Luna is a vocal activist and is constantly working to put Mexico’s art and talent on an international stage through his work, vigilantly reminding his audience that Mexico has culture waiting to be explored past the resort walls of Cancún and Cabo. 

“The beauty of Mexico is that there are many Mexicos—it’s a very diverse country. You have the Pacific Coast that is beautiful and vibrant and really cool. By far my favorite beach spots in Mexico are in Oaxaca, and all the region of Baja California. You also have the desert and jungle and Veracruz and you have all the Caribbean coast and the city is to me a place I can’t really escape. Home is Mexico City, and it will always be where most of my love stories are and where I belong,” Luna said in a sort of love note aside to his home country. 

As much as Luna can talk endlessly about his favorite tacos in Mexico City (Tacos El Güero for any inquiring minds) and the gastronomic wonders of its pocket neighborhoods such as la Condesa, he also wants the dialogue around Mexico’s violence to be shown under a spotlight, as searing as it may be. 

“We can’t avoid talking about violence because if we stop, we normalize something that has to change,” Luna said. 

Perhaps “Narcos: Mexico” can bring some introspection and change after all. Let’s hope the politicians are watching.

READ: ‘Narcos: Mexico’ Season 2 Picks Up Where We Left Off With Félix Gallardo And The Guadalajara Cartel

Mexican Newspaper Slammed After Publishing Graphic Photos Of Woman’s Tragic Death

Things That Matter

Mexican Newspaper Slammed After Publishing Graphic Photos Of Woman’s Tragic Death

SkyNews/ Twitter

In Mexico, the recent brutal mutilation and slaying of a 25-year-old woman are spurning conversations about the country’s efforts to prevent femicide and laws that protect victims from the media.

On Sunday, Mexican authorities revealed that they had discovered the body of Ingrid Escamilla.

According to reports, Escamilla was found lifeless with her body skinned and many of her organs missing. At the scene, a 46-year-old man was also discovered alive. His body was covered in bloodstains and he was arrested.

As of this story wasn’t troubling enough, local tabloids and websites managed to bring more tragedy to the victim and her family by splashing leaked graphic photos and videos of the victim’s body. In a terribly crafted headline, one paper by the name of Pasala printed the photos on its front page with the headline “It was Cupid’s fault.” The headline is a reference to the fact that the man found at the scene was Escamilla’s husband.

According to leaked video footage from the arrest scene, Escamilla’s husband admitted to stabbing his wife after a heated argument in which she threatened to kill him. He then claimed to have skinned her body to eliminate evidence.

Mexic City’s mayor, Claudia Sheinbaum, revealed that prosecutors will demand the maximum sentence against the alleged perpetrator.

“Femicide is an absolutely condemnable crime. It is appalling when hatred reaches extremes like in the case of Ingrid Escamilla,” Sheinbaum wrote in a tweet according to CNN. According to reports, Mexico broke records in 2018 when its homicide record reached over 33,000 people that year.

The publication of Escamilla’s mutilated body has sparked discussions regarding the way in which reports about violence against women are handled.

Women’s rights organizations have lambasted the papers that originally published photos of Escamilla’s body and Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador also expressed criticism of the media’s response to the brutal slaying.

In a press conference on Thursday, President López Obrador expressed his determination to find and punish anyone responsible for the image leaks. “This is a crime, that needs to be punished, whoever it is,” he stated.