Highway and tourist area checkpoints are part of the operations that the Public Force have carried out since March 27 in Nicoya and Santa Cruz, with the goal of protecting vacationers during Easter Week.
Juan Eras, chief of the Nicoya Public Force, explained that they have set up checkpoints at different sites on the highway and continuous patrols in beach areas for the week.
“We are maintaining permanent highway checkpoints at the Tempisque bridge and the Puerto Viejo crossing, for which we have the support of the traffic and immigration police. For coastal areas, we are doing constant patrols and have the support of Operational Support Groups (GAO – Grupos de Apoyo Operacional),” Eras said.
Eras noted that, at the police checkpoints, visitors are given helpful information about safety, the security of personal items, and all manner of threats. The closest-watched beaches are Samara, Nosara and Bahia Ballenas.
In an effort to help with security on the beaches of Nosara, a group from the Security Association and volunteer residents, along with the Tourism Police, have been handing out informational flyers, starting on Wednesday, April 1. The flyers include advice on security, recycling and the area’s points of interest.
“We spent most of the day today at the 5 corners and by the bus stop of the Nosara Yoga Institute, passing out security tips, and recycling bags. We will be doing it as well tomorrow Thursday 10am to 12pm and 2 to 4pm, same spots,” said Agnes Pinehiro, from the Nosara Security Association.
For his part, Elder Monge, the chief of the Santa Cruz Public Force, said that they will maintain three police bases along the coast, in Villareal, San Juanillo and Flamingo, where the Tourism Police operates as well.
Beach patrols are constant, especially in Tamarindo, San Juanillo and Conchal. The operations have GAO’s support.
On the highways, checkpoints will be random, but there are points such as the 27 de abril crossing and the road to Cartagena that will be constantly watched, as they are the main access points to the coast in Santa Cruz.
Another of the points that will be monitored are the bus stations, due to the massive influx of people there. Patrols in downtown Santa Cruz and bus stations will be carried out by the municipal police.
According to Monge, the most common crimes around this time are thefts and auto break-ins.
“In these days, what you see most is theft and auto break-ins, with groups especially operating near beaches, which is why we recommend not leaving valuables or vehicles unattended, always visiting beaches with someone you know, and following authorities’ instructions,” recommended Monge.