MX Phone: 415.185.8311 or 415.185.8407

US & Canada Phone: 1 (214) 550.4898


No one likes to think about disaster striking, but you'll be glad you prepared if (knock on wood) anything emergencylike were to happen. So post these phone numbers in a handy place and perhaps even write out your own address and contact information

too, just in case someone is calling on your behalf.

When preparing for an emergency, keep in mind that speed isn't exactly a forté here in San Miguel. Sometimes the police respond very quickly to the report of a crime...and sometimes they don't. Same with ambulances. As of this writing, the Red Cross staff for all of San Miguel includes only 11 people. If you are seriously ill, it might be faster to simply call a nearby friend or neighbor and ask them to get you to the hospital.

The all purpose emergency number is 066. In a true emergency, it's best to dial this

number because it is from here that trained workers coordinate the police, firefighters and emergency medical crews that can and should be sent to your location. As of 2014, the 066 service is bilingual. If you dial 066 and there is no answer (scary, but it has been known to happen), try one of the Police/Public security numbers below.

Note: While we have done our best to provide accurate and up-to-date information, it is the user's responsibility to verify that this information is current and to familiarize themselves with emergency procedures.

Police/Public security
152-2890, 152-0911
The police force in San Miguel is small; be proactive and take preventative measures to keep your home and yourself safe.
Red Cross (ambulance)
065, 152-4121, 152-1616
In non-emergency situations, Red Cross administration can be reached at 152-4225 and
Clinica Tech 100 152-2233 Clinica Tech 100 is known for attending to emergencies with prompt, kind and professional care.
Dr. W. Ricardo Gordillo Morath
415-109-5961 emergency cell
Dr. Gordillo is a great M.D., makes house calls and speaks English. Plus he's an all around nice guy. His office is located at Hidalgo 28 in Centro.
Dr. Jesús Hererra
122-2881 or 100.0403
01-461-219-9810 - emergencies
For dental emergencies, we highly recommend Dr. Herrera, a wonderful bilingual dentist located at Stirling Dickinson 27-D. For more details, go to
Electrical Dangers and Power
071 or 152-7393
Power outages, especially during and after storms, are fairly common in SMA. To report such an outage, call CFE, the electric company, at this number. You may also want to report downed lines or other dangerous electrical problems. You will need to be able to speak and understand some Spanish.
Gas leaks
If you suspect you have a gas leak, you can call this number and say "Hay una fuga de gas en mi casa", which means "There's a gas leak in my house." They will ask you for your address and perhaps your phone number, so be able to say both in Spanish. You can also call a plumber, who will likely be able to help with gas lines. (Note: this is not the number to call if you need someone to fill up your gas tank.)
Legal Emergencies
U.S. Consular Agent Ed Clancy
415-113-8574 emergency cell
Canadian Embassy
Emergency Centre for Canadians
001-800-514-0129 (from Mexico)
Contact your consular agent or embassy if you need help in any of the following areas:
renewing your passport
notarizing a document
receiving assistance if you have been arrested or receiving assistance if you are the victim of a violent crime

See also page 18 for more details.
ServiTaxi 152-5993
If you don't have a car and need a taxi asap, there are several taxi companies available, one of which is ServiTaxi. Note, however, that you will generally be charged double when you call a taxi to pick you up at a specific location.

emergency urgencia (er HEN see ah)
police policía (po-lee-SEE-ah)
firefighter bombero (bom BEH roh)
fire ¡fuego! (foo-EH-go)
electricity electricidad (ee leck trees ee DAHD)
gas leak fuga de gas (fuga deh gahs)
I need a doctor Necesito un doctor (nes eh SEE toe oon doctor)
It's very serious Está muy grave (es TA moo ee GRAH veh)



Wait for it...wait for it...and wait some more. If you look up the word "ahora" in a Spanish/ English dictionary, it will be translated as "now." What the dictionary doesn't say is that "now" is a pretty relative term to Mexicans, especially those living in SMA, a smaller and much slower town than say, Mexico City.

If someone says "Voy a empezar a cocinar ahora" ("I'm going to start cooking now") it doesn't necessarily mean right now. It could mean the now that happens in the next hour. Or two. Ahora mismo is closer to the (right) now that Americans think of, as is ahorita, but neither are really any more precise. Both can mean in a few minutes or in a little while. Sure, you can press people for an exact time, and they might give you one, but that doesn't mean it's definitive.

Similarly, just because the sign says the store opens at 10am doesn't mean the doors are going to open at 10. When you read these signs, imagine the words mas o menos (more or less) written after each time.

What is an American to do?! Relax. Is it frustrating? Sure, it can be. Is it life threatening? Probably not. You'll be doing yourself a big favor if you start to think of time as a mas o menos kind of thing.

Fortunately, this mindset can also work in your favor. I came home one day to see my plumber sitting in front of my house, waiting for me to arrive. Did he expect me to be home, not having made an exact appointment? No. Was he irritated? Not at all.

Most everyone will wait patiently for you, so try to show them the same courtesy. I suggest that when you are out and about, carry a book or notepad with you so that you can occupy yourself while you wait. Read your Spanish- English dictionary. Meditate. Contemplate. The line at Mega isn't going to move any faster if you are sighing dramatically and glaring at the cashier. Instead, breathe deeply. Find someone to smile at, and go home happy.