The weekend of Palm Sunday, on March 29, is the unofficial start to spring break in Costa Rica. School lets out for the Easter holiday and those with vacation time head to the beach. Unfortunately, the weekend signaled an unusually deadly start to the festivities.
The Costa Rican Red Cross tweeted Monday morning that 15 people died in the previous 48 hours across Costa Rica, up from 11 during the same time last year. During the weekend another 21 were seriously injured.
#SemanaSanta • En 48 horas, murieron 15 personas de forma violenta y 21 resultaron delicadas
— Cruz Roja Costarricense (@CruzRojaCRC) March 30, 2015
Freddy Román, spokesman for the Red Cross, told The Tico Times the number of deaths so far this holiday week is unusually high. Most of the deaths involved car accidents and weapons-related conflicts, Román added. On the Pacific Coast, emergency responders attended to five sea rescues. There was one drowning.
A total of 24 died during Semana Santa in 2014, according to another Red Cross tweet.
People in need of emergency assistance should dial 911.
Meanwhile, police arrested 35 people and confiscated marijuana, cocaine and crack from several people, according to a statement from the Public Security Ministry.