Mexico. It is encouraging to note the decrease in the number of fatal accidents on Mexican mountains in 1951 compared to 1950. Two fatalities as a result of a total of four accidents were reported to this committee by the
Chairman of the Safety Committee of the Club de Exploraciones de Mexico. On 13 September 1951 one person disappeared and his companion was badly frozen on the volcano Citlaltepetl (Orizaba). In addition, three accidents on rock were reported. In March, two people were hurt in falling from a cliff in the State of Hidalgo. Failure to use pitons for safety was given as the cause of the accident. In September, one person died and another was hurt in a fall from a cliff in the State of Mexico while climbing in rainy weather. In the same month, three persons were hurt in Monterey while trying to make a climb, apparently without much knowledge of the fundamentals of mountaineering techniques.
It is particularly interesting to note that about two thousand persons attempted the ascent of Popocatepetl for the 1951 Celebration of the Flags. About sixty percent of these reached the lower summit. There were no injuries. This fact is attributed to the organization of special brigades to watch dangerous places. It is gratifying to learn that no one was allowed to begin the climb without the necessary equipment and some satisfactory indication that he was in condition to attempt the ascent.
A letter from "Alpinismo" , a Mexican climbing journal, states that there were only eight fatal accidents in 1949 rather than the nineteen reported. It is also stated that there were seven or eight deaths on La Muela instead of the "about twenty" reported to this Committee in that year. The statement that accidents on the descent of the Pachuca Crag often occurred while the victims were under the influence of alcohol is suggested as being an exaggeration. The most frequent causes stated in the "Alpinismo" letter are inexperience and inadequate equipment.