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Security and police presence in Arraial d'Ajuda

Arraial d'Ajuda Special Guide. 16-Feb-2011 .brazilbeachtravel
Analysis on security and police presence in Arraial d'Ajuda

During the beginning of 2010 Arraial d'Ajuda made headlines in Brazil (and also in some international media) of an increase in insecurity and crime, with the growth of the village to become one of the most international destinations in Brazil, Arraial d 'Ajuda was increasingly attracting traffickers who made a lot of money selling drugs to tourists, and also many criminals from neighboring cities.

Puesto policial en la bajada de la ladera de Arraial d'Ajuda
Puesto policial en la bajada de la ladera de Arraial d'Ajuda
foto de brasilplayas.com - CC by-nc-nd

The drug business in Arraial always existed and kept growing along with the development of the village, assassinations for settlement of accounts between traffickers were always common during the low season, which changed in early 2010 is that traffickers other states came to settle and take over the profitable business, which generated a war with local traffickers that caused the death of some innocent victims. The important media in Brazil echoed the news and Arraial went from one day to the next in the Brazilian media, from being a quiet coastal village to being an insecure place.

Cerca eléctrica
Cerca eléctrica
foto de brasilplayas.com - CC by-nc-nd

Part of the problem is that Arraial d'Ajuda belongs administratively to Porto Seguro, the police that have to patrol Arraial is under the orders and control of the municipality of Porto and that created a conflict that made Arraial vulnerable.

Muralla en casa de Arraial d'Ajuda
Muralla en casa de Arraial d'Ajuda
foto de brasilplayas.com - CC by-nc-nd

With almost no police presence, the criminals arrived from Porto Seguro in small boats and stole houses in areas near the streams behind the Estrada da Balsa without practically resistance, the local traffickers acted in the center in view of everyone with the greatest impunity.

As always, a misfortune(or several actually) had to occur for local politicians to pay attention to an old problem: even though the district generated(and generates) one of the main capital inflows(both by tourism and by taxes) for the municipality, the isolation of the village made the police presence in Arraial d'Ajuda almost null in relation to Porto Seguro.

With the running of 2010, and with the fear of the municipality of Porto Seguro of being at risk of losing its "chicken of the golden eggs", the municipality had to attack the growing problem of insecurity drastically: police detachments were installed in strategic Arraial sites, constant patrols were implemented, and razias with tolerance 0 were organized, which eliminated the traffickers(both local and new arrivals) from the village.

Since the beginning of the 2011 season, the center of Arraial d'Ajuda and the tourist areas such as the "Rua de Mucugê" have become much safer places than before.

Security tips in Arraial D'Ajuda

Although with the increasing presence of the security forces and the successive blows to the traffickers, Arraial d'Ajuda can be said that today it is a place as safe or more than others of similar size on the Bahian coast.

Although the feeling of insecurity decreased a lot, we should not neglect basic questions: all tourist places, as well as tourists and seasonal workers, also come near criminals who intend to spend their summer at the expense of the money presumably brought by tourists.

Therefore, it is not convenient to walk around showing off valuables in the surroundings of the squares of the center, especially at night, not to walk in dark or solitary places(the beaches at night for example) and if you think about going through those places , do it only with the money needed for that night.

If you stay at the inns of the Estrada da Balsa , it is preferable to avoid going back at night walking from the center. You can wait for a bus or a combi(from dawn the frequency is from hour to hour) or take moto-taxis from the ones in the vicinity of the artisans' square, to any inn of the Estrada da Balsa should not charge more than 6 or 7 reais per person.

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Puesto policial en la bajada de la ladera de Arraial d'Ajuda
Puesto policial en la bajada de la ladera de Arraial d'Ajuda
Muralla en casa de Arraial d'Ajuda
Muralla en casa de Arraial d'Ajuda

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