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19 September 2013 09:10
Hundreds of stranded tourists gather around a Mexican Air Force jet as they wait to be evacuated at the air base near Acapulco (AP)
British tourists in storm-hit Mexico have been left stranded as flooding forced roads to close and a number of flights to be cancelled.
Tropical Storm Manuel further caused more than 13 landslides to hit the area, restricting road transport access to the main route into or out of Acapulco for at least the next two days.
With some holidaymakers trapped in their hotels in the popular seaside resort, up to 40,000 people headed to a nearby military base to catch one of a dozen flights ferrying tourists to Mexico City.
At the international airport, priority was being given to ticket-holders, the elderly and families with children on one of the two flights still running each hour.
According to military officials, two passenger planes were in service, with a few hundred able to board one of five helicopters or seven cargo planes drafted in to aid the stricken passengers.
Tourists hoping to enjoy a sunny beach break were left disappointed by the torrential weather, with the incident reinforcing the importance of
comprehensive travel insurance for anyone planning a trip overseas.
David Jefferson Gled, 28, from Bristol, said: "It's probably one of the worst holidays I've ever been on. It wasn't really a holiday, more of an incarceration."
With thousands hoping to board an evacuation flight from the military base, but only 700 flown out to Mexico City, many were left queuing on the runway or in the quarter-mile-long line of traffic approaching the site.
More than 800,000 residents in the area could have to wait two days before relief supplies and food is brought into the city, federal officials revealed.
City officials said about 23,000 homes, mostly on Acapulco's outskirts, were without electricity and water.
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