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A.M. Costa Rica
Your daily English-language news source , Monday through Friday

.....
San José, Costa Rica     Published: Wednesday,  January 3, 2018     Vol. 18,  No.0103

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...

Gusts of wind could have caused plane crash

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Authorities state that continuous winds and strong gusts were felt in the area where a plane crashed in Costa Rica last Sunday.

The accident killed 10 American passengers and two local crew members. It occurred Sunday in the northwestern region of Guanacaste, a popular tourist destination with tropical beaches and crystal clear waters. The victims traveled in a Cessna 208 Caravan, owned by the local airline Nature Air.

The aircraft burst into flame on impact, according to rescuers and residents of the area who first arrived at the scene.

Costa Rica's Civil Aviation Agency said pilots had tried to land in the town of Punta Islita earlier on Sunday to pick up passengers, but had to withdraw due to gusts of wind.

So far, the agency has assured the public that the plane had up-to-date certifications and had been inspected one month before the accident.

"There was a lot of wind, very strong," a resident of the area said.

A witness said that when she and other locals arrived at the hillside crash site, they could not see saying, "absolutely everything was black."

Police and firefighters arrived about 25 minutes after the plane crashed, shortly after noon (18:00 GMT) on Sunday, local residents explained.

Through DNA testing and forensic odontology, the Judicial Investigation Agency (OIJ) intends to identify the victims of the plane crash.

The interim director of the institution, Michael Soto, said the bodies were found burned, making the work a lot more difficult.

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  Ministerio Seguridad Publica courtesy photo
  Costa Rica government issued an official statement sending the condolences to the families of those who died in the accident.

"The traditional technique would be DNA testing, a method that is complicated when there are burned bodies, however, it will be tried. The forensic dentistry will also be used with some dental records that are being sent to us from some of the victims’ relatives.

The OIJ confirmed the list of victims from the passenger manifest as: spouses Bruce and Irene Steinberg, their children Matthew Benjamin, 13, William Aaron, 18, and Zachary, Justin, 19. The manifest also included doctors Leslie and Mitchell  Weiss, along with their two sons, Ari Moses, 16, and Hannah, 19. The tenth passenger was Amanda Rae Geissler, 33.

The pilots who managed the Nature Air TI-BEI aircraft were Emma Ramos Calderón and Juan Manuel Retana Chinchilla.

"We continue looking for remains of the plane to establish what caused the accident.  The bodies were lifted out at 4:00 am on Monday and taken to the Judicial Morgue in San Joaquin de Flores, Heredia," Soto said.

At the moment, OIJ suggests two hypotheses for the crash: wind gusts or a mechanical failure, but the investigation is ongoing.
.....

Almost 3,000 drivers have not paid their Marchamo

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

About 20% of drivers have not paid their mandatory car tax known as the Marchamo, according to Roger Arias, head of the Solidarity Insurance Director at the Instituto Nacional de Seguros.

"As of Dec. 31, just over 1,200, 0000 vehicle owners punctually paid their right to travel, something very similar to what happened last year," said Arias.

As usual, many drivers have waited to pay the Marchamo on the last day of the year, so long lines were reported.

Out of the payment that each driver makes, only 20% goes to the INS for the Obligatory Automotive Insurance (SOA). This insurance covers up to ¢6 million colones, in medical services to those people who are involved in a traffic accident.

The highest item charged in the Marchamo belongs to the property tax by the Ministry of Finance and accounts for 65.31% of the total.


Marchamo010318.jpg   AM Costa Rica archive photo
Marchamo provides an insurance policy of up to 6 million colones in medical expenses.

Those who did not pay on time are subject to fines and interest rates and could have their license plates seized.
After January 31, the Marchamo can only be canceled at the INS agencies.
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A.M. Costa Rica's

Second News Page


San José, Costa Rica           Published: Wednesday, January 3, 2018         Vol. 18, No. 0103
Calendar
Opinion
Classifieds
Real Estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us
.....
New year already accounts for 4 deaths

By AM Costa Rica staff

Since the beginning of 2018, violent accidents have caused 4 deaths and left 14 more people in intensive care here in Costa Rica, according to the Costa Rican Red Cross.

One man died after falling from a tree in Cieneguita, in the province of Limón.

In San Jose, a cyclist died after being hit by a vehicle and colliding with another car. Apparently, after the crash, one of the cars also ran over the victim.

In Lepanto de Puntarenas, a strong firework exploded in a man’s face and he died on the site.
 
Red Cross also reported the death of a motorcyclist who skidded in Guácimo de Limón.
 
In addition to the 4 deceased, the Red Cross transferred at least 14 people to emergency sites, six of them for being shot.
 
The shootings took place in La Garita de Alajuela, Curridabat, Limón, Corralillo de Cartago and San Carlos.


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AM Costa Rica archive photo   
Police dealt with six people shot at the beginning of the year.
Also, in Sarapiquí and Oreamuno de Cartago, 2 people were treated after being attacked with a knife. Their conditions remain critical.
 
The Red Cross made 6 transfers of patients in critical condition due to vehicle rollovers, skids, and collisions.



2017: the year with the most road deaths
in Costa Rican history

By AM Costa Rica staff

By the end of 2017, more than 457 deaths were recorded as a consequence of traffic accidents. This sets a new record.
 
During 2016, 456 deaths were recorded due to car accidents, but the death toll figure has been increasing in recent years.
 
Speeding, alcohol and carelessness are the main causes of these accidents and the majority of the victims are motorcyclists,  according to authorities.
 
"I think we should strengthen a road safety culture. For example, we see the use of the rear belts as something optional, but no, the idea is to save the lives of the passengers and it is everyone responsibility to use it,” said Mario Calderón, director of the Traffic Police.
 
Data also shows that most traffic-related deaths occur on Sundays, with Saturdays in second place.


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AM Costa Rica archive photo    
Most of the deaths caused by traffic accidents occur on weekends.





Residency experts

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JAVIER ZAVALETA
RESIDENCY IN COSTA RICA
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U.S. and San José offices
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...
A.M. Costa Rica: Third newspage



A.M.
Costa Rica

Third News Page
Residency

San José, Costa Rica          Published: Wednesday,  January 3, 2018         Vol. 18, No. 0103
Calendar
Opinion
Classifieds
Real Estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us
 
Ministry of Health closes pools in Puntarenas

By A.M Costa Rica staff

Unhealthy pools and problems with the treatment plant are part of the problems at the San Lucas Beach Club of Puntarenas, a situation that has forced the Ministry of Health to withdraw the club’s sanitary permit.

The premises has been closed since the end of December.

The director of the Area of Health Puntarenas-Chacarita, Érica Jiménez, explained that the pools lack the necessary filters and chemicals to ensure cleanliness.

Additionally, the doctor commented that the treatment plant, "is in terrible condition and emits rotten smells.”

The situation caused nearby premises to file a complaint at the end of the year.


Jiménez said that the previous year an senior citizen suffered a fall at the club due to unsafe conditions and filed a complaint with the health authorities.


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San Lucas Beach Club courtesy photo    
Sanitary offenses led to the closure of the club.

The doctor explained that the San Lucas Beach Club has a history of flaws of this nature.

The San Lucas Beach Club opened its doors in September 2012. Previously on the site were the municipal swimming pools.

Changes to the Puntarenas Ferry are under discussion

By A.M Costa Rica staff

In the near future, the ferry in Puntarenas will be insufficient to meet the demand of passengers and vehicles that use the service every day to connect the communities of the Nicoya Peninsula and Guanacaste.

Due to this situation, it is important to move this terminal to Caldera port, where the possibility of expansion is greater, authorities said.

A study will be developed by an external consultant who will define the future of this space, according to the infrastructure director of the Port Maritime Division of the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MOPT), Fabricio Badilla.

The official said that some improvements are currently necessary, however, there are a number of limitations that prevent expansion.

The Puntarenas Ferry berth, located at the tip of Barrio El Carmen, adjoins an estuary, so expansion there is impossible as it would generate an impact on this protected site.


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AM Costa Rica archive  photo    
Puntarenas ferry has no more expansion capacity, experts said.

On the other side of the berth are a series of houses and businesses whose expropriation would be difficult to carry out.

The study will be part of the master plan that is funded through a $450 million loan from the Inter-American Development Bank.

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A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica           Published: Wednesday,  January 3, 2018         Vol. 18, No. 0103
Calendar
Opinion
Classifieds
Real Estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us
.....

Dengue, Zika and Chikungunya cases plummeted in 2017
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By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

While 2016 was packed with patients of Dengue, Zika and Chikungunya,  the cases of infections were substantially reduced in 2017.
 
Zika, which appeared in Costa Rica for the first time in 2015, registered a total of 359 confirmed patients in 2017 compared to 1,649 in 2016.
 
In the case of dengue, 2016 registered 22,650 patients at week 49, but, for the same interval in 2017, the number fell to 5,324.
 
Chikungunya also experienced a substantial reduction from 3,550 cases in 2016 to 393 in 2017.
 
The director of Health Surveillance, Daniel Salas, pointed out that since 2016 the trend has decreased every month.
 
Salas attributed this significant decrease to the actions that were carried out to eradicate Aedes aegypti mosquito breeding sites.
 
Salas regretted that, despite the efforts, there are still houses with stagnant water accumulations that encourage mosquito growth and reproduction.
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AM Costa Rica wire services photo    
Stagnant water is the perfect environment for the growth of the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which transmits Zika, Dengue and Chikungunya.

In total, 4,768,659  potential breeding sites were identified during 2017, of those, 54,411 had eggs or larvae.

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U.S. Income Tax Services (paid category)

Summers102317.jpg U.S. Income Tax Services
Marlene B. Summers
T
ax Accountant
Let’s discuss your tax situation.

Marlene
                                  Summers
The IRS has become more aggressive and if you have not filed, you must do so. 

However, there are solutions to problems and your situation may be better than you think.

If your filing is not up to date, Streamlined Filing can be used with no penalties.

Including disclosure of foreign corporations to avoid serious problems.

If tax payment is holding you back, the IRS has options to solve payment problems.

You can file current or past due FBARs without payment to meet IRS  requirements.

If you have yet to file, do it now as there is still time.

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n
Specializing in all matters of concern to U.S. taxpayers residing abroad including:
n
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• Reporting foreign financial assets: FBAR and foreign corporations.
• Up-to-date FATCA news.
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• Business consulting to facilitate working in Costa Rica.
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E-mail jrtb_1999@yahoo.com


Real estate rentals (paid category)

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Tropical Homes of Costa Rica is offering the best selection of vacation homes, condos and long-term rental homes in Playa Flamingo, Playa Potrero and Playa Brasilito on  the Pacific Gold Coast of Guanacaste. A wide selection of private residencies is providing an excellent choice for  your stay in this beautiful part of Costa Rica.We are offering homes for every budget and every need. Please visit our Web page at www.tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or contact us at rentals@tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or call at (506) 2654-5442
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Real estate-related services (paid category)

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FineFurniture

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All our handcrafted products are made in Sarchi with pride and quality by artisans who are dedicated to designing, crafting, and delivering our furniture to you. Please visit our website and send us a picture and specifications of what YOU like, or just send us pictures from anywhere you wish. We will quote you right back with a more than competitive price and an on-time delivery date. Delivery and set up available throughout Costa Rica. We have different Costa Rican woods from which you may choose. 
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9057-2/25/17


                     Legal Services
Adrian Fernandez
Attorney & Notary
A Fernandez
Notary services and registrations. Collections and foreclosures. Real estate and litigation. Corporate Law. Immigration. Estate planning wills and testaments, probate.

I provide the highest professional standards. Official documentation and Notary deeds are always translated in English for better comprehension, client satisfaction and safety.

 Call me for advice
    Phone:  2280-9692 / 2253-3705
    Email: ajfernandez@racsa.co.cr
    Law Office is conveniently located near  Mall San Pedro, 350 meters south  from the Hyundai dealer, Los Yoses, San José.
9181-7/3/17


 
A.M.
Costa
Rica
Fifth
news page


San José, Costa Rica    Published: Wednesday,  January 3, 2018      Vol. 18, No. 0103
Calendar
Opinion
Classifieds
Real estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us

Time off and social networks make minors
vulnerable to improper relations

By A.M. Costa Rica staff

Time spent outside the classroom and easy access to the world of social networks on the Internet favor improper relations between minors and adults.
 
This is the opinion of the director of Children and Adolescents of the Office of the Ombudsman (DHR), Kathya Rodríguez.
 
According to Rodríguez, alternatives for teenagers are scarce outside of the educational system, but approximately half of the young people drop out before completing their school years.
 
When the teens are actively attending school, many of them go home to empty houses since the current dynamics of the Costa Rican family demand their parents work outside the home.
 
Additionally, most communities offer practically no recreational possibilities.
 
"The park is closed with four keys so that they do not get to steal the field equipment and all those things, there are no proposals for development in the community," an official said. "There is also a technological scenario that is very attractive, I do not have to move from home,  and I am in contact with everyone, but what is this world?  Who are the ones in contact with them?" said Rodríguez.
 

"Let's say that they spent six or seven hours at school, being very optimistic, and they arrive at a house, where they have to serve their meals, warm their lunch, do homework, and from then on what?" said Rodriguez.

SocialMedia010318.jpg
AM Costa Rica wire services photo          
The dynamics of modern life exposes the kids to risky situations.


 
The technical manager of the National Board of Children (PANI), Elizabeth Ballesteros, stated that this is why it is necessary for the state to bet on carrying out work with the parents of the young people and their families.
 
"The parents and the caregivers in general, were raised with the mentality that the child is cared for until a certain age and then he or she is self-reliant and makes his/her decisions but  now we know it is even between 23 and 25 years that a human being is ready to make the right decisions," said Ballesteros.

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A.M.
Costa Rica

Sixth News Page
San José, Costa Rica           Published: Wednesday,  January 3, 2018         Vol. 18, No. 0103
Sports
Calendar
Opinion
Classifieds
Real Estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us

"Can you dig it" - out?



We have a lot of gardening books in our house. I have books on organic gardening, pruning, tropical ornamentals, the big guide to Costa Rican plants and trees and five or six books on orchids. What I don’t have is a book on weeds.

Yes, we have all heard that, “weeds are just flowers growing where they shouldn’t.” Baloney! Weeds are nasty, clingy, stickery, invasive, pains in the neck (and back and fingers). Their thorns penetrate gloves and shirts and I have the scratches to prove it. They also stick to your gardening clothes and your socks. Just toss everything into the washer?  No way! Those burs will migrate from your socks to the inside of your undies. In a couple of days you will wonder why you are so itchy in such unscratchable places.

Victoria1plant010318.jpg

That’s just the human part. If you have a dog or dogs, beware of weeds! Since weeds don’t have to do anything but grow quickly and bloom, they go to seed equally fast. Nasty sticky seeds with little hooks or burs or husks that catch on your dog’s fur. Our little dog gets a daily bath for dirt (which she barely tolerates) and a good combing out (which she absolutely hates) for burs. She whines, she whimpers, she scratches, she gets me soaking wet and all because of weed seeds.

Victoria2plant010318.jpg
Rectangulo110117.jpg
Then there are the, “blowing away,” sort of weeds. You think you got them all but it only takes one dandelion to infest another piece of the lawn or garden or pasture. Personally, I loved dandelions when I was a kid and I bet you did too. There is something about watching the seed float on the wind that is enchanting… but I am an adult. All I think of now is where the dang things are going and what they will do when they get there.

Then we have the poisonous weeds like the aptly named “horse poison.”  Wear good gloves when you pull it out because the white sap can irritate your skin. The leaves are not like those of the dandelion which can be tossed in salad, the leaves are actually poisonous for horses (and probably cattle). This is probably why there are so many of them in fields – horses and cattle aren’t stupid and have learned to avoid the plant. It does have a pretty flower though.

Victoria3plant030118.jpg

That’s the problem with some weeds, they do have pretty flowers. If only they didn’t produce such nasty seeds, I would be happy to have some in the garden.


Plant for the Week
Here are some of my favorite weeds, they do make pretty flowers – but then they make burs. And at least one of the plants has thorns. Hmm. When you pull them out, try to get the roots because they are very persistent. On the weed below, you can see that it is blooming and setting seeds at the same time. Bad weed, bad.

Victoria4plant030118.jpg
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Real estate for sale (paid category)

44 LOTS FOR SALE IN GATED COMMUNITY

PLAYA AVELLANA, TAMARINDO, GUANACASTE
....

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Condominio Monte Donato II, is an unpretentious gated community, offering 44 lots at very accessible prices starting at only $19.995 and a monthly HOA fee of $28.

Located near Playa Avellanas and Hacienda Pinilla, at 3 miles from the beach. The project is located in a very quiet rural area. You will only hear sounds of birds and monkeys.  Playa Avellanas is one of the most beautiful beaches of Costa Rica and a Surfer’s paradise.

Common areas: Swimming pool, Rancho, shower, restroom, soccer field, play ground

Water: The project has its own well and a 13,200 Gallon storage tank.

Security: Guard lives on the premises. Perimeter enclosure.

Construction: No zoning plan. You can build when you want, what you want!

Lot Sizes around 250m2 / 2700 sq. ft.

For detailed information www.montedonato2.com/index

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CODE 9267-9/28/17


Business for sale or lease (paid category)

Fishing Lodge for sale in Panama

DanielPeavy

Fishing Lodge For Sale In Panama. To many assets to
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boat ramp, 22 foot panga and more.  Remote and
Beautiful location on the fishing grounds. Built in
clientele list and a turn key operation. For more information and asking price our email address:
aquaad@hawaii.rr.com   Visit the site www.hookedonpanama.com

9284-3/22/18   



Live the dream!
Several profitable businesses, including a regional radio station, are for sale in Costa Rica. Certain purchases can provide the new owner with residency as well as a great lifestyle. So live your dream while making a profit. Contact: manager@crbusiness.biz.

Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)
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ReMax Playas del
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We are an award-winning Team of Professional Agents working with Costa Rica’s #1 Selling Real Estate Agency RE/MAX Prestige Ocean Properties. Get to KNOW, LIKE & TRUST us and let us help you find YOUR Pura Vida! We have over 30 years of experience to educate our buyers and sellers in all aspects of Real Estate.  For Information on condos, homes, lots, farms, ranches, commercial or development property
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Link to Playa Hermosa listings page HERE
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Toll Free 1-877-293-1456
Email: michael@costarica-realestate.com

9174-2/7/18
.....
Real estate for sale (paid category)

284-3/22/18   


Charming country home in the mountains above San Ramon
Bril Cajar

Lot size is 500 square meters, total construction about 212 square meters, with living area of about 156 square meters. Three bedrooms (or two and an office), two and one half baths, shop/storage of about 30 square meters. Carport with space for two cars about 30 square meters. Completely fenced property. The area is peaceful and very secure.  For complete information click here

Contact Harv  in English and Spanish:
Email cap@lightsurfer.com  

Contact Marco in Costa Rica (Spanish) :
Email- marvama05@gmail.com
Phone- +506-84608000 or +506-8667-2823.  

Web page:  www.costarica-house.com

Or CLICK HERE FOR MORE COMPLETE INFORMATION
9266-12/5/17


Colinas del Sol
COLINAS DEL SOL Fenced Gated Lots for Sale

* Colinas del Sol is a fenced and gated project  in a quiet area.
* There are 88 clear titled lots.
* Mountain areas with great views.
* Gently sloping level areas ideal for hobby farms, gardening, fruit trees.
* Quiet place to get away from the busy city and beach crowds.
* All lots have gravel roads to them, water and electricity at each.
* Lots are 5,000 sq. meters or larger, starting at only $50,000 USD
* Located in Libertad, Guanacaste, northwest Pacific area of Costa Rica.
* 20 minutes to the Liberia International Airport
* 15 minutes to the Pacific Beaches
* 10 minutes to Medical Facilities
* 25 minutes to the Liberia Hospital
* 5 minutes to Vista Ridge Golf Club

Contact:
In Costa Rica, Jeffrey Sandi Murray:  jsandimurray@colinasdelsolcr.com
In the USA and Canada contact Jim Day: jimday50@aol.com or call 517-484-3675

For more information Click Here: www.colinasdelsolcr.com
9261-3/2/18



            Real estate-related services
 
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Remax Tamarindo

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......
Costa Rica business news
A.M. Costa Rica

Seventh News Page Business
San José, Costa Rica      Published: Wednesday,  January 3, 2018       Vol. 18, No. 0103
Calendar
Opinion
Classifieds
Real Estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us
....

National refinery to invest more than $2 million
in spill prevention


By A.M. Costa Rica staff

A new system of automatic tank measurement and spill prevention will be installed at the Costa Rica Petroleum Refinery (Recope) facilities, located in El Alto, La Garita and Barranca.

The objective is to guarantee the standardized requirements for inventory control and product transfer of hydrocarbons are met in the country.

In total, 57 controls are being installed in 57 tanks, which will be operated by personnel from the Distribution and Sales Management of Recope.

The company responsible for the installation of the equipment is Constructora Edica and the cost of the work is ¢1.594.801.603 in raw materials acquired in the country. And $2,845,637.99 of imported elements. The system is expected to be completed during the first half of 2018.

According to Roy Vargas, the system will measure variables such as pressure, product level, temperature and water level.

The storage of hydrocarbons is one of the main functions of Recope.


Recope010318.jpg
AM Costa Rica archive photo
By law, fuel storage is a responsibility of Recope.


The administration, technical inspection and other inspections of the contract will be the responsibility of the Department of Construction for Distribution and Sales of the Development Management, with the participation and technical supervision from the Engineering Department.
Announcement: American Legion Post CR10 will have its regular meeting on Wednesday, the third of January at the Casa de España at 11:00 hours. We will have a well know lawyer, Roger Peterson, to speak on wills and inheritance laws of Costa Rica. The public is invited to attend and hear this very important subject discussed.
Ken Johnson, Vice Commander
Email: kstacey90@hotmail.com

......