Security Alert – U. S. Embassy San Salvador

Location: El Salvador

Event:  The Travel Advisory level for El Salvador remains at Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution. However, the U.S. Embassy advises U.S. citizens that we have established an internal travel policy to better inform our personnel where they may and may not travel on personal trips to better ensure their safety.  Due to crime, remoteness, and/or lack of access to emergency services (among other factors), the following travel restrictions apply to U.S. Embassy personnel until further notice:

  1. U.S. Embassy personnel may not drive outside the city/town limits of their overnight destination during the hours of darkness.
  2. U.S. Embassy personnel may not stop at scenic overlooks outside of designated tourist parks.

In addition to the above, U.S. Embassy personnel may not travel to the following departments, except to directly travel on main roads during daylight hours to the locations listed as exceptions under each department name:

  1. Santa Ana, with the following exceptions: Lago De Coatepeque, Parque Nacional Monte Cristo, Parque Nacional Los Volcanes (Cerro Verde, Volcan De Izalco, Volcan De Santa Ana/Ilamatepec), Lago De Guija, Metapan, Apuzunga, Metapan, El Tazumal Ruins, Chalchuapa, Casa Blanca Ruins, Chalchuapa,Laguna Cuzcachapa, Chalchuapa, Balneario El Trapiche, Chalchuapa Piscinas De Galiano, Chalchuapa
  2. Cuscatlán, with the following exceptions: Suchitoto Town, Lago Suchitlan (Puerto San Juan, Suchitoto/San Francisco Lempa, Chalatenango – Vía Ferry Crossing), Cascada Los Tercios, Cerro Las Pavas, Sitio Arqueologico Ciudad Vieja, Casa De Alejandro Coto, Museo La Memoria Viva, Parque Ecologico Cinquera, Rio Lempa, Grottoes
  3. San Vicente, with the following exceptions:Laguna De Apastepeque, Amapulapa Water Park, Chinchontepec Volcano, San Sebastian (Telares)
  4. San Miguel, with the following exceptions: Playa Las Flores, Playa El Cuco, Laguna De Olomega, Laguna El Ocotal, Turicentro Altos De La Cueva, Ruinas De Quelepa
  5. La Unión, with the following exceptions: Conchagua (The Town), Volcán De Conchagua, Golfo De Fonseca, La Union Port (Pier), Parque De La Familia, Guatajiagua (Black Clay Crafts)

La Union Beach Exceptions: Las Tunas, Torola, Playas Negras, El Jagüey, Maculis, Playa La Flor, Playa Blanca, Las Mueludas, El Tamarindo, Estero El Encantado, Chiquirín, Playitas, Golfo De Fonseca, Isla Conchaguita, Isla Meanguera Del Golfo, Isla Zacatillo, Isla Martín Pérez, Isla Pirigallo, Playa Majahual, Playa Guerrero, Playa El Corozal, Rio Goascoran, Los Islotes Y Los Farallones (border with Honduras, Nicaragua)

Furthermore, within departments where travel is permitted in general, U.S. Embassy personnel may not travel to the following:

  1. San Salvador: An area bordered by (and including) the municipalities of Ayutuxtepeque, Apopa, Distrito Italia, Tonacatepeque, San Martin, Ilopango, San Marcos, Soyapango, and Centro Urbano Amatepec 2a Etapa. Also Downtown San Salvador (except for  professional guided tours) and Urbanización Las Lomitas. However, clubs on the shores of Lake Ilopango are permitted.
  2. Sonsonate: The tourist attraction at Chorros de la Calera, Juayúa.
  3. La Libertad: The municipalities of Colón and Lourdes, and the tourist attraction at Los Chorros, Santa Tecla.

Actions to Take:

  • Avoid areas included in the restrictions above whenever possible, and driving outside of major roads and highways
  • Avoid walking or driving after dark
  • Remain aware of your surroundings, and keep a low profile
  • Maintain a high-level of vigilance, take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security, and follow instructions of local authorities
  • Do not physically resist any robbery attempt
  • Monitor local news for updates, including local events