The bridge connected the Todo Santos boardwalk to the pier.
“I was there at that time with my family and after we crossed the bridge,” said Martin G., “it was about 30 seconds after, when I heard it fall.”
On the evening or Dec. 14, during the Desfile De Luces (Parade of Lights), a reported 11 people fell into the Ensenada bay after a bridge they were on connecting to the sport fishing-pier collapsed.
An older woman was tended to by a man wearing a bright orange uniform.
“What a horrible moment,” said Gaby Chaves, “I saw injured children and elderly folks.”
“I came from there and the line to go up was long,” said M. Gomez, “I hope to God, all those people are OK.”
Mexican news reports said the bridge collapsed due to the weight of the people; photos from SEMAR (the Mexican Navy) surfaced of the broken bridge which appears to made of aluminum and wood and once connected the Todo Santos boardwalk to the pier.
SEMAR, provided first aid to the injured. The boardwalk side of the bridge appears in the photos to be 10-12 feet above water by large rocks. On one Facebook video of the aftermath, a man is wheeled away on a gurney; an older woman was tended to by a man wearing a bright orange uniform that bears the “MARINA” name and a yellow helmet that reads “ENOC.” Paramedics from the Red Cross and the fire and civil protection agencies reportedly supported the Port of Ensenada personnel and the Navy and Coast Guard, on the scene.
The Christmas light-boat parade resumed the next night.
“Immediately a Defender-type vessel was directed to the site and helped transfer two people from the dock, to the Mercado Negro,” says the Unimexicali outlet. “Navy health personnel provided first aid to those affected by the incident, and via the Hospital Naval de Ensenada ambulances, six of the injured were transported to hospitals in the local area.”
“The authorities here do not learn,” said Miguel Torres, “these facilities are old, and the [helmsman or captains] do not say anything — there are times when they overload their vessels in order to earn more.”
The prices to take a cruise around the bay in a lighted and Christmas-inspired and decorated vessel, are equivalent to: $29 USD per person; $52 USD per couple; $132 USD for a package of five; and $23.75 USD for children 5 years old and younger.
There were reportedly “hundreds of people” that attended the annual event.
“These accidents seem to me, to be due to lack of foresight and maintenance in these areas,” said Maria Garcia, “where the ideal security conditions should be enforced.”
“They weren’t controlling the patrons that were supposed to leave after their boat rides,” said one Ensenada resident who noticed the “lax security …. and those new patrons who wanted to get on the boats — piled up. It was a lack of organization.”
According to the news reports, all of the victims that fell into the water that Saturday survived. The annual Christmas light-boat parade resumed the next night.